OTTplay Logo
settings icon
profile icon

Exclusive! Vinay Pathak: Influx of OTT releases affecting the footfall on theatrical releases of content-driven small films

The actor makes an observational comment from his recent experience and will soon come up with an anthology titled Opium.

Exclusive! Vinay Pathak: Influx of OTT releases affecting the footfall on theatrical releases of content-driven small films
Vinay Pathak
  • Arundhuti Banerjee

Last Updated: 02.24 PM, Jun 01, 2023


Veteran actor Vinay Pathak, who has been one of the poster boys of independent cinema since the time he made his debut in films with Fire in 1996, pointed out how many of his films are going unnoticed and remain unreleased. The actor also says that even though earlier content-driven films used to have a theatrical audience, in the post-pandemic era, that section of the audience has migrated to streaming platforms, which affects the business of the film if released theatrically.

The Bheja Fry fame actor told OTTplay, "Well, it is true that these days people are interested in watching good content, but not necessarily in the theatre but in the comfort of their home on an OTT platform. So if we really want to watch a content-driven film that is not a mainstream commercial Bollywood film, I think the accountability lies with the majority of the audience, whether a film is a hit or a flop, by showing up to the theatre. Earlier, people had an interest in watching a film like Bheja Fry in the theatre; these days, I am not sure if we can get the same footfall."

It is interesting to notice that despite knowing that such small-budget, content-driven films always face problems getting a good release, Vinay has always associated himself with such films throughout his career.

His performances have been appreciated in films like Khosla Ka Ghosla, Mixed Doubles, Johnny Gaddaar, Say Salaam India, Dasvidaniya, Chalo Dilli, Midnight's Children, and Gour Hari Dastaan, among many others.

Explaining the reason behind making such choices, Vinay said, "Yes, I would say 95 percent of my films are such because it is a conscious effort and I get drawn towards such stories. As an actor, I do not see myself running around a heroine and killing 20 guys at once. You know what I mean? I think I will just laugh out loud on the film set if I try to perform them. At times, I enjoy watching them but do not see myself as an actor in them. It is like different literature for different people. I also want to bring to your attention that most of the films that I have made in my career were by debutant filmmakers. Those stories are fresh and unadulterated because I feel that the first film of any director is the result of something that they have been trying to say for the longest time, and it is their personal expression. So the excitement of making a film with a debutant director drives me."

His new film Opium received three nominations at the New York Indian Film Festival 2023: best director, best screenplay, and best film.