Single commercial break - MAXing the movie experience

MUMBAI: As innovations go this one is not likely to generate as much media chatter as MAX's experiment with the female anchor during cricket matches, which ultimately sent all the doubters for a six.

But the decision by Sony Entertainment's movies and events channel to introduce a movie slot that will have only one commercial break is certainly a move whose impact will be closely watched by those who matter.



Says Rajat Jain, executive V-P & business head of MAX, "Since this will be very much like the lone interval we are used to in cinema halls, it should provide our viewers with a cinema-hall-like movie-viewing experience in the comfort of their homes." put the poser to Jain as to how he expected to recover revenues as advertisers would be loathe to shell out more for the spots during the four-minute commercial break. Advertisers' argument could well be that the probability of viewer switchover during the interval would be even higher than normal after watching a film at a stretch (especially considering Hindi films are so long anyway). Says Jain, "From an advertising perspective, we are certainly looking beyond the standard format of selling commercial time. We believe that over time, once this concept gets established, some more innovative revenue opportunities will emerge. An immediate opportunity that an advertiser could get out of this is a stronger association in terms of brand fit."

The main sponsor on such a film would get much higher deliveries guaranteed as the question of clutter is ruled out, says Jain. He, however, stressed that TAM viewership data over a four to six week period would provide a clearer idea of what the actual response was.

An added advantage the Mera Movie slot provided was that the movies aired are based on viewer preference requested for each week by voting on its website,, says Jain. This by extension guaranteed better deliveries even without the new innovation.

The one break innovation kicks off with the comedy Awara Pagal Deewana on Sunday, 25 January at 1 pm.

Jain said, "We plan to screen more such films each month. In February, there will be three more such single-break Mera Movies, on Sunday the 1st, 8th and 15th of February at 1 pm, and we plan to give our viewers some great family entertainers to choose from."

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