Nepali cinema: Economy vs. Innovation

Nepali cinema: Economy vs. Innovation

The Cinema Times

Bishnu Sharma
10532356_830139827004036_8051518946234530540_nWith the end of 2070, South Africa brings a thing, which is hard for to believe, but it’s a fact. According to The Economist, Nigeria became the richest country beating South Africa cause of its cinema development and technology.

Thanks to Nollywood, whose rapid development has increased the economy of the country to 89% over a single night. It has won over Bollywood in the context of annual film production rate. It occupies 1.4% of Nigerian G.D.P. It might be a dream for us but this position of Nigeria has been made possible all by today’s generation.

With dream, commitment, courage and system nothing is possible. We can see Nollywood, which made the Nigeria, the 22nd richest country in the world.

Total release movie – 97
Verdict release – 95
Total investment – NRs. 47 crore 50 lakh
Investment Recover Movie – 5 [Cha Ekan Cha/ Hostel/ Kali/ Jhola/ Jholey/ Badshala]
Investment Recover – Gross 7 crores 25 lakh
Loss – Gross NRs. 40 crores 25 lakh
Foreign movie collection – 11 crore gross [Dhoom 3 and Chennai Express]

This approximate data clearly shows the Nepali Cinema market. Despite of less no. of releases than compared to last year, 97 is itself a overload digit. Only 60 movies in 52 weeks is sufficient for us but due to release of 4 cinemas in a week is becoming hazardous, also graph of failure is getting its peak.

The movie “Cha Ekan Cha “became grosser movie by earning gross 1 crore 60 lakh (net 65 lakh). Three movies (Jhola/Jhole/Cha Ekan Cha) entered the crores club. Among 20 cinemas none of them earn 1 lakh only. The earning above net lakhs were only 15 movies.

With the beginning of New Year, still 50 cinemas are in stock. Development and inauguration of movie has not stopped yet. From Nepal only, Dhoom 3 earned 8 crores gross and Bollywood star Shah Rukh Khan earned 3 crore gross by the cinema Chennai Express. In approximate Hollywood has earned more than 2 crore from Nepal.

For such variation/imbalance, we can see the National incident of 2070 B.S. Last year, it only focused on election. Maoist were weak, stadium was full of crowd because of cricket cup. All were busy in front of television. There were changes in political power too. Instead of cinema, there were gossips. More than acting there was gossips about body shows.

According to the arithmetic, we can say that business of Nepali movies is loss market. In the present context, film development has become the way of cheating. According to Sunil Manandhar (Film distributor and producer),” Film development is the way of cheating.” and “It has become the trend of cheating new director.” If 5 lakh is paid to register the title then the movie won’t get chance to move forward. The main focus of Sunil is on the comeback of old directors.

In front of odd year 2071, there is a greatest challenge with the less effort and power it is difficult to get success over it. Just to get a release date of movie, it has become big thing this year. It has become the compulsion to make mark in calendar according to Bollywood calendar.

Foreign movie influence has started since Baisakh 5 with the Hollywood movie “Captain America” and Bollywood with three khan stars who occupies Nepali multiplex cinema hall. Release of popular movies “Fantom” and “Bomboy Velvet” at a same time won’t leave any space for Nepali cinema. It’s just an example. With the beginning of New Year many multiplex hall will be constructed with the huge budget which has cause a threat to Nepali film and its industry.

Because of load shedding, single screen cinema halls outside Kathmandu valley will be closed gradually. Most of the staff of cinema hall has not paid yet since many months. In the city, Multiplex hall like civil trade centre five star hall, QFX Thamel and Pulchowk hall, rising mall, Baneshwor i-plex,Bagbazar, Bishwojyoti and Ranjana are opening soon. In the upcoming year, in the cities like Pokhara, Hetauda and Narayangadh multiplex hall will be constructed. So, we should understand that there will be more threat for Nepali film with more construction of multiplex hall.

According to one informal statistical data, an average Nepali yearly spends Rs. 1500 to Rs. 2000 on a cinema. Among which 60% watch on CD or DVD and other 40% prefer going to cinema halls. That spending is for five cinemas. In a month, one has free time to watch one cinema. In other month, he is stopped either by farming, rainfall or political reasons. Thus, there must be shortage in creating cinemas.

In upcoming years, there will be use of new genre for the film production. Among these, many films will be based on comedy genre. Where Nepalese society seems unable to smile openly, comedy genre will be preferred. Female action movies will come but we can’t predict good box office of such cinemas. As in Bollywood, Rekha and Bijaya Shanti were used in 70’s, similar will be done in 071 year. This will act as a voice through cinema in protesting towards the patriarchal society. Nowadays women participation in society has become very influential. Similarly, political thriller genre cinemas will also be made.

Nepali move will gradually get down to Terai .Cinema screen will search the identity of Terai. In cinema, psychology of hilly areas has been over exploited, so now the location of Nepali film will be Terai whose signal has already seen with the ending year 2070. Subject like corruption, irregularity and counter terrorism can be shown in Nepali film.

Using different genre, Nepali Cinema 2071 will be appreciating on individuals stories. Biopic, horror, suspense, murder mystery and human struggle and other individualistic genre cinemas will be made. The worldwide trend of having a story with individuals’ value and worth has seen being influenced in Nepalese cinema. This is so because in last edition of Oscar award this has been reflected and cinemas with human emotion were successful to grave the award.
Between new and old generation loud disputes will prolong on cinemas viewpoint, importance and priority. This can be called as economy vs. innovation. Because old generation tend to find economy (business value) in movies and new generation are more into searching innovation. Opposite side of this synthesis can be economy and innovation. But for now this debate won’t be ending.

As in year 070 new generations tried telling the story in new style and the way old generation gave more focus to business value of movie, it seems taking both the trend will be better. It might feel controversial but, without establishing a filmy culture within the nation searching an overseas market is not important. By not developing cinemas culture at home and searching international market is more like the story of dacoit Ratnakar.

In 2070, Nepali cinemas maximally big mistake was- filmmaker making no interaction with literature, sociology, psychology, politics, anthropology, philosophy and dramas. Not including such major subjects and not accepting cinema as literature product is the other biggest mistake. In year 2071 Nepali filmmakers should follow these academics.

Last year few free films weighted more on beam balance. Kesang Chhetan’s “who will be Gorkha” earned 30 lakh on multiplex. This film earning is more than featured films. More than director as well as critic Manoj Pandit’s serious subject and serious nature cinema, emotional, entertaining movies with common story but expressed in uncommon style are much in need.

Grammatically Nepali cinema is correcting itself which can be seen in about half a dozen movies that were released in 2070. In the same way, new generations who are interested and have studied cinematography are gradually searching for on screen grammar. New experiments were done in technological area and Nepali cinematography is starting to get conscious about technical skills.

Mass psychology has not been able to introduce in Nepali Cinema now. Every producer claim about making the film till mass but they are not able to implement it practically. Hero and Heroines are more center of focus than the actual movie itself is which exact opposite of it. Until the movie is released, there are a lot of gossips surrounding the cinema but when the movie is released the gossip completely stops. In 2070 promotion of the movie was mainly focused on gossip rather than issuing actual news in newspaper article.

The chance of issuing the infamous Nepalese Movie act in 2071 is very low. Even in the film environment discussion about the movie act is not hot as it should be. This proves that the government sees the cinema ceremonially. But if we understand that “even in the dark cloud there is silver lining of hope”, there is a huge chance of cinema development in Nepal. If we are able to make the content and screenplay strong, there is a high chance of decreasing 50% of the Bollywood audiences in Nepal.