The pandemic and the resultant lockdown ensured that streaming platforms held the centre stage when it came to the entertainment needs of the public. But as the lockdown eased, and cinema halls started to open, albeit with some restrictions, things were expected to get better for them. Theatres, it was said, would make a major comeback as people would be loath to give up on habits and practices built over decades of cinema watching.
As it happens, that does not seem to be the case if one were to take the example of Master, a big ticket release of Tamil star Vijay.
The Tamil movie Master, which had a mega theatrical launch on January 14, is already making its way to Amazon Prime Video.
Amazon Prime members in India and across 240 countries and territories can catch the digital premiere of Master on Amazon Prime Video starting January 29, 2021.
A mega movie making it to an OTT platform within 15 days of its theatrical release must be a record.
Big star releases usually take a minimum of 3 to 6 months to stream on OTT platforms.
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Is it a sign of things to come?
Master stars Vijay and Vijay Sethupathi along with Malavika Mohanan, Andrea Jeremiah, Shanthanu Bhagyaraj, Arjun Das in pivotal roles.
The film is written and directed by Lokesh Kanagaraj, produced by Xavier Britto and features Anirudh Ravichander's music.
Vijay Subramaniam, Director and Head, Content, Amazon Prime Video, India, said: “Master is one of the most anticipated Tamil movies of the year and we are glad to have the opportunity to bring the movie to Prime members in India and across 240 countries and territories this month.
Sharing his excitement for the film’s digital premiere, writer & director Lokesh Kanagaraj said, “With the film's global digital release on Amazon Prime Video, we are hoping to reach a wider audience that’s been at home, and reach regions that otherwise wouldn’t have been possible."
Though the film was claimed to be a success in its theatrical release, the fact that it quickly is being streamed on Amazon Prime gives a big indication on which way the industry may be headed.
Amazon Prime Video upping its game in India
Master seems another winner for Amazon Prime, which also streamed the biggest talked about film on Indian OTT platforms last year, Soorari Pottru. It was a direct release on Amazon Prime which also had that made-for-OTT platform Malayalam movie CU Soon.
Nishabhdam, Halal Love Story, Middle Class Melodies, Maara, Bheemasena Nalamaharaja, Mane No. 13, Penguin, Law, Sufiyum Sujatayum, Ponmagal Vandhal, French Biriyani, Gulabo Sitabo, Shakuntala Devi, Coolie No. 1, Durgamati, Chhalaang, among others, were some of the first-on-OTT releases on Amazon Prime Video last year.
Amazon Prime Video is available in India to Prime members for Rs 999 annually or Rs 129 monthly.
Amazon has recently partnered with Indian telecom company Airtel to launch a new Prime Video plan made specifically for mobile users. It's available at a starting price of Rs 89.
India is among the fastest-growing markets for Prime and Amazon Prime Video, according to Amazon Prime Video India Director and Country General Manager Gaurav Gandhi.
Amazon Prime Video is focussing its investments on bringing more content and expanding its service to a larger audience in India.
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