Director Cheran, whose Thirumanam released recently to fairly-harsh criticism and which disappeared soon from theatres, had a proposition on Saturday for those who watched the film through illegal means. “Friends, here is a chance for you to get rid of your guilt. Those who claimed they could not watch my movie Thirumanam in the theatres, and so watched pirated copy online, can send the cost of a ticket to the account here,” he tweeted.
நண்பர்களே. குற்ற உணர்விலிருந்து விடுபட ஒருவாய்ப்பு.
திருமணம் படம் தியேட்டர்ல பாக்க முடியல அதுனால பைரசில பாத்தேன்னு சொல்றவங்க
அதற்கான தொகையை இந்த அக்கவுண்ட்க்கு அனுப்பவும்.
Preniss international (OPC) pvt ltd
HDFC bank Salem branch
Ac number 50200032460937
Ifsc code HDFC 0000178 pic.twitter.com/GoscV6Arf6
— Cheran (@directorcheran) May 25, 2019
The director added, “You don’t even have to visit a bank, you could even send the money from your phone. This is the ideal solution for those who call it a good film, those who claim to watch my films with their families and those who say they don’t have the opportunity to watch it in theatres. I had put forth the same thought during Autograph as an advertisement. Despite Internet connectivity not being what it is today, more than a lakh people sent Rs 100 each. I’d like to see how our people react now. So, spread the word.”
Responses to his tweet came from both fans and trolls, with some wondering why they would watch a film that was trashed by all. Thirumanam might have met a bad fate at the box office, because it was outdated, but something similar took place when Raju Murugan’s Joker released.
Producer SR Prabhu took to Twitter to narrate how someone who saw the film through a pirated source, was so impressed by it that they sent the production house the money due for the tickets. Others followed suit. “We received anywhere between Rs. 1.5 lakh and Rs. 2 lakh from people who watched it illegally. It was deeply gratifying that the content of the film nudged them to do the right thing,” he recalls. The production house went one step further – it used the money to build three toilets in Tiruvannamalai area. This was in keeping with the theme of the film too.
Prabhu says that from a time when only 10 per cent of the movie-watching crowd did so using legal means, the popularity of streaming platforms has seen it grow to 30 per cent or so. “During Aruvi too, some money came into our account this way. This mostly happens when the content speaks for itself. In a way, this is also some form of appreciation and encouragement,” he says.