Hindi film production houses and distributors selling satellite and television rights of their movies for whopping amounts, as has in the past, may not continue in the current year. This could affect the revenue of entities like Eros International Media, 30% of whose earnings comes from selling film rights to movie channels.
"Bajirao Mastani", globally distributed by listed entity Eros, reportedly sold the satellite rights of the Ranveer Singh-Deepika Padukone-starrer for Rs 35 crore, according to Business Standard. Earlier, trade analyst Taran Adarsh had said MSM had acquired the TV rights of Shah Rukh Khan-starrer "Dilwale" from Red Chillies Entertainment for Rs 60 crore, besides agreeing to jointly produce content for films and television.
Another blockbuster, "Bajrangi Bhaijaan" starring Salman Khan earned about Rs 50 crore under a five-year deal between the actor and Star India Network, while the music rights (sold to T-series) have fetched around Rs 10 crore.
But these could be aberrations and may not recur. In 2015, there was a 40% decline in rates for satellite and television rights of Hindi films, according to Mint.
The report said new Hindi film channel launches pushed prices up. Aggressive buying made business sense for channels as these movies drove television rating points (TRPs), translating into increased advertisement revenues.
But not many TV channels are expected to be launched in 2016, and therefore, satellite rights of even box office hits may see softening of rates, giving leeway to channels to drive a hard bargain.
Also, box office hits are not necessarily successful when aired on TV channels, the Mint report added. "Yeh Jawaani Hai Deewani" was a box office success, earning Rs 188 crore, but generated TRP of a meagre 0.2. The Ranbir Kapoor-Deepika Padukone-starrer was acquired for Rs 25 crore.
Paradoxically, the lesser known film"Ramaiya Vastavaiya" garnered just above Rs 36 crore at the box office but registered a TRP of 2.5 when shown on television, the report said.
The trend could hit a major revenue stream for distributors and producers, like Eros and other production houses. The company derives about 30% of its revenues from these rights, with theatrical rights contributing 38% and the rest coming from overseas sales.
Eros recovers the entire production cost of movies before they are released in theatres by selling music rights, satellite rights and 39% guaranteed cost recovery from its parent for international distribution, according to an update by ICICI Direct last August.
Hindi movie channels largely comprise of Sony Max, Star Gold, Zee Cinema, Movies OK and &pictures.
It would be interesting to see how the latest set of movies such as "Wazir" and "Kya Kool Hain Hum 3" end up when they sell their satellite rights.
"Wazir" features Farhan Akhtar, Aditi Rao Hydari, Bejoy Nambiar, Vidhu Vinod Chopra and Amitabh Bachchan, while "Kya Kool Hai Hum 3" has Tusshar Kapoor, "Bigg Boss 9" contestant Mandana Karimi, Aftab Shivdasani as lead characters.
Meanwhile, shares of Eros International have been going downhill ever since "Bajirao Mastani" directed by Sanjay Leela Bhansali was released on 18 December, 2015. The price was Rs 260 on the day and closed at Rs 202 on 15 January, 2016. During trading, the stock almost touched its 52-week low of Rs 198.95.
Shah Rukh Khan's "Dilwale" was also released on 18 December.
MSM and Red Chillies Ent ink strategic alliance. To co-produce TV, digital and film content. TV rights of #Dilwale also acquired by MSM.
â€" taran adarsh (@taran_adarsh) November 20, 2015
â€" SRK HATERS KO MAARO (@SRKswarrior1) November 20, 2015
The worldwide box office collection of "Dilwale" was Rs 306.10 crore, while that of "Bajirao Mastani" stood at Rs 347.57 crore till the end of the fourth weekend.