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Movies no longer getting OTT deals until the theatrical release

6 May 2024

Some high-profile movies lost their OTT deals after box office failures.

From the early to mid-2000s, TV platforms like Sony, Star, Viacom18, and Zee engaged in a bidding war to secure a movie’s streaming rights, sometimes before it went into production. OTT followed the same practice. 

Online streaming platforms offered a price based on the box office figures of the lead actor’s last movie. Since projections are not working now, OTT platforms are striking staggered deals in parts. They pay a percentage before theatrical release, and the contracts offer them the option to terminate the agreement in case of commercial failure. 

OTT platforms still buy big titles at a negotiated price but refrain from absorbing duds in their catalogue. They also decline deals on the grounds that films do not meet their standards.

Until 2022, movies were released online within four weeks of theatrical launch, which was increased to eight weeks from August 1st, 2022.

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