The film released on Zee5’s pay-per view medium ZeePlex and in select theatres in the country.
The film was uploaded online illegally hours after its release on Thursday. It was available on the platforms like Moviesflix and Tamil Rockers.
The actor mentioned that the cyber cell is taking action against the platforms that have uploaded the film.
(Read Silverscreen India‘s review of Radhe here).
Radhe also stars Disha Patani, Randeep Hooda, and Jackie Shroff. It is the first Hindi film to adopt the “hybrid model” of release or the simultaneous release on an OTT platform and in theatres, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and uncertain nature of lockdowns imposed by different states across the country.
The film can also be viewed on several direct-to-home services, like DishTV, D2H, Tata Sky, and Airtel Digital TV.
The film was initially scheduled to release in May 2020 but was delayed due to the pandemic.
Soon after Khan’s statement, Twitter was abuzz with various hashtags directed to the film, including #BoycottBollywood, #RadheFlop, and #radhemovie.
While the foundation stone of endless mockery was laid the day of the release after the film received negative reviews from the critics, it was Khan’s tone in his post that intensified it.
The film currently has an IMDb rating of 1.9.
Rs.249 per view for RADHE is reasonable? O_o https://t.co/0cG9ICpROx
— Rutuja (ऋतुजा) 🇮🇳 (@Havaldarshinde) May 16, 2021
u seriously think rs 249 for a crappy movie is reasonable?https://t.co/BYXNfo8qos
— MISTER introvert ✊ (@sardarshankar4) May 16, 2021
While several lashed out at Khan for calling Rs 249- the rate fixed for viewing online – reasonable, others attacked him for releasing his film during trying times such as this and voiced their preference to donate that amount for a Covid patient.
Instead of watching #Radhe by paying Rs 249, at this time of a health crisis, I would prefer to pay for the COVID-19 vaccine of someone who cannot afford. Or assist children who have lost their parents. @BeingSalmanKhan
— Savio Rodrigues 🇮🇳 (@PrinceArihan) May 16, 2021
@MoHFW_INDIA @RShivshankar @ARanganathan72 @Shehzad_Ind @tehseenp @TimesNow Instead of watching #Radhe by paying Rs 249, at this time of a health crisis, I would prefer to pay for the COVID-19 vaccine of someone who cannot afford. Or assist children who have lost their parents
— MK (@madhureshsethi) May 16, 2021
I will go rather one step ahead,I will charge Mr. Khan Rs.249 to view his movie and will donate some for Covid19 Vaccine.
And multiple times I can view in these terms.
— Manish A (@ManishA31531387) May 16, 2021
I would pay to the multiple charities like I am already doing for several things – food, oxygen, medicines for those struggling without money or help among the poor and less fortunate. In such times, the ads for #Radhe itself could have fed thousands. 😣💔 #WhyRadheNow
— AB – 🙌 VACCINATE INDIA!🧘 (@bonginexile) May 16, 2021
Instead of watching #Radhe by paying Rs 249, at this time of a health crisis, I would prefer to pay for the COVID-19 vaccine of someone who cannot afford. Or assist children who have lost their parents. @BeingSalmanKhan https://t.co/56bYSTeyQl
— Siddharth Boraste. (@SidharthBoraste) May 16, 2021
Piracy of big banner films before their release is not new.
In January, two days ahead of its theatrical release, clips from the Tamil film Master were leaked on social media. What followed was a furore against piracy, especially, after the film’s director Lokesh Kanagaraj urged people on social media to stop sharing the clips and report them.
While the Master model followed a digital premiere three weeks after its theatrical release, Radhe released simultaneously in cinemas.
Other films that were pirated in 2020 post a digital release include Vijay Sethupathi’s Ka Pae Ranasingam, Hindi film Khaali Peeli, and Nishabdham.
In an earlier conversation, producer SR Prabhu had told Silverscreen India earlier, “Avoiding piracy is not a choice. You can control it, thereby, minimising the damage. It all depends on the demand for the content. If there is a content that nobody wants to watch, even if you give it to them, they won’t watch it”.