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Entertainment Industry in Shambles Due to Covid-19: What’s Next?

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Entertainment Industry in Shambles due to COVID 19

I got a match on ‘Aisle’ (who don’t know about Aisle – well it’s a dating app) the other day and this guy pinged me, “If the Corona Virus doesn’t take you out, Can I?”.

His pickup line sure was innovative!!

Now that was sheer creativity that I never expected from a stranger atleast. For the typical messages you get before the weekends are like- “Got any plans for the weekend? How about a movie?”

When I think about it, lockdown has just turned my entire week into a 7 – day working job.

No more grabbing a coffee at my favorite cafe!

No more Sunday brunches!

No more going out for a movie!

Theatres closed

Entertainment! Entertainment! Entertainment! – Miss your Saturday Night movie plans yet?

Feel like watching a movie? Log on to Netflix or Amazon Prime.

Want to watch a TV Show? – Apple TV, Jio TV is here for you!

Sure, everything is being delivered at the doorstep. But, the magic just isn’t there! The pure joy of waiting for the weekend to arrive, planning for a late night movie with a friend, seems like a distant memory now.

We have now entered the fifth month of the lockdown. Malls are still shut. Movie theatres are still closed. I am dead sure, you all would agree that the entertainment industry has been radically affected. Our super stylish celebrities are killing the lockdown time by doing household chores just like us.

Did you know, theatrical releases for movies are almost scheduled up to a year in advance? Yes! That’s how jam-packed the releases are. But, due to lockdown, the theatres have been shut since March. Movies earn most of their profits from these theatrical releases. So, film makers have two options – either postpone the release or release online.

Studios are choosing to release big-budget films, like Suryanvanshi, once the lockdown has lifted. We will only be able to see Suryavanshi later this year or next year. But do you think you would be comfortable sharing a confined room with 200  people?

 now?

Sholay meme
Picture Credits: RapidLeaks

With the theatres being shut and shoots being cancelled, entertainment workers have been left jobless. Priya Village Roadshow or PVRs, as we popularly know them, have reported a loss of Rs 74.61 crores in the fourth quarter. Aren’t the figures itself mind-numbing?! .

Inox Leisure Limited has also reported similar figures with a loss of 80 Crores in the fourth quarter. Think about the daily wage workers who service the PVRs. I don’t see it improving anytime soon! Do you? This pandemic sure has been the worst disaster of our times. But, it has also forced us to be more innovative.

Drive-in cinema’s are fast becoming a thing
Image Source: TRT World

Drive-in cinema’s are fast becoming a thing! 

Imagine watching a movie on a gigantic screen from the comfort of your car.

You don’t have to bother about dressing up!

You can carry as much junk food as you want!

You don’t have to spend ginormously on flavoured popcorns!!

Old drive-in cinemas are being revived in countries around the world. Cities like Ahmedabad, Chennai and Gurugram already have drive-in cinemas. We just didn’t relish the concept so much in the past. But, times are changing. So are we! Are drive-in cinemas the future of theatre in India?

Music Industry has suffered a major setback

Music Industry, just like Film Industry, has suffered a major setback. How? Singers earn most of their profit from live performances and tours. Because of restrictions on large gatherings, music industry workers are finding it difficult to economize.

You might be aware, most of the workers on these sets are contractors and freelancers. These contractors get paid based on the frequency and the scale of gigs they work on.

How do they even survive without any government intervention or care package?!

How is the Industry handling it?

The industry is definitely fighting back with new and more innovative ways to market and monetize music consumption. I believe their best bet is to generate revenue from digital downloads and licensing of music for movies, games and ads. We have now entered the world of live streaming and online album releases and it seems the trend is here to stay.  

Did my Idiot Box just turn stupid! Where are my favourite TV Shows?

people working in the Television industry have also been hit
Source: Unsplash

Not just theatres and music industry, people working in the Television industry have also been hit. Where are my favorite TV shows? Not screening anymore! Sad. Right?! We are locked up and there is nothing new on TV. The shoots for our favourite television shows have been stopped to control the spread of COVID.

The biggest source of income for the TV and print media are advertisements. With the lack of new content on Television and no new sporting events, advertisers are pulling back.

We all have witnessed the reports and claims from actors working in the television industry demanding their producers to clear their dues. At a time like this, where shoots have been paused, these actors have to depend on their savings for everyday expenses.

The spin-offs from the pandemic are such that they have brought the film, television, music and theater businesses to their knees. Who gets affected the most? People who work behind the scenes like camera operators, technicians, production designers, makeup artists and casting directors.

Doordarshan brought epic serials like Ramayan and Mahabharat back
Picture Credits: Neha Gupta

To keep the viewership going, channels like Doordarshan brought epic serials like Ramayan and Mahabharat back. We were all stuck to the TV set while Ramayan aired. We all posted about it on social media. We all saw the memes. We all saw the hype! Ramanyan fast became the most watched show during the lockdown. It made us happy!

These strategies did bring some relief to the channel authorities but still the repercussions of the lockdown have been immense. Job losses in Media and Entertainment industry alone are predicted to be nearly 7 lakh.

OTT – Future of Entertainment

OTT - Future of Entertainment

Over-the-top media service providers or OTT platforms, as we know them, have emerged a hero. Remember the hype around the Spanish Web Series Money Heist?? Money Heist was a “huge hit” in India as per Netflix’s chief content officer, Ted Sarandos.

New subscribers on Netflix, during the pandemic, doubled as compared to their forecasts at the beginning of this year. In the absence of theatres and television shows, OTT platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, HotStar have gained popularity and mass viewership. We are now seeing key players in the film industry considering releasing movies on OTT.

We have witnessed the release and success of Gulabo Sitabo on Amazon Prime. The trend has been set and is being followed by Akshay Kumar’s Laxmi Bomb. Producers like Vikram Malhotra are also supporting OTT movie releases by announcing the release of Shakuntala Devi on OTT.

Are OTT movie releases taking over the theatrical releases? Or Is it just a temporary trend for the artists to keep afloat?

Streaming platforms are coming up with new ideas for monetizing content

Streaming platforms are coming up with new ideas for monetizing content by giving out paid membership for artist channels and commenting features. Virtual events and gatherings are fast becoming a thing!

Who wants to wait another 24 hours to watch the next episode. We are a microwave generation. Understandably, we resonate with the concept of OTTS and streaming television.

Work from home means more time to spare. More time to spare means increase in content consumption on OTT platforms. Infact the FTTH providers are providing additional support to OTT platforms. Did you know JioFibre has already announced plans to get subscriptions for Zee5, Hotstar, VOOT and SonyLIV? 

This is making OTTs an even larger game changer for the entertainment industry. This might just be a glimpse. Imagine how the post coronavirus world will look look like?!

The Show must go on!…

The Show must go on

We are all desperately waiting for this nightmare to end.

What does it mean for the entertainment industry?

Will we see our cinema halls fade away?

Will Drive-in Cinemas become a thing in India? Or

Will the OTT Platforms completely capture the market?

Will they become the driving force in the media and entertainment industry?

After a long week of slogging at work, everybody wants to hang out. We are social animals and getting imprisoned at home would drive us crazy. I am somebody who loves being outside. I have been eagerly waiting for the Cinema Halls to open so I can go watch a movie on the big screen. After all, it’s not all about the movie. It’s about the experience!

Entertainment

Desi Web Series: Luring the Masses Through Soft Porn!

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Desi Web Series

India has always been known for its culture, veil, and morals; the obscenity and vulgarity thrown at the audiences these days in the form of local web series on OTT platforms is so against our culture!

Motive – To have an enhanced subscriber base & win the TRP race.

With the increasing competition in the market, Bollywood and Hollywood directors are coming up with different content formats to get the audiences hooked.

So.. the Indian web series are not so Indian anymore! And with the growth in the viewership of Over-the-top (OTT) platforms, the Indian publishers and directors’ way of luring the masses, has turned the local web series into soft porn. Lust, swears and daring is becoming the new normal.

PEOPLE LOVE TO EMBRACE PORN?

Local web series content is just soft porn that is now aired online freely for unlimited streaming in the cyber world.

XXX-2 (Source)

Remember the infamous controversy that dragged Ekta Kapoor into a situation where people on social media continuously bashed her, for producing content that degrades  Indian culture! If the actresses have no shame, how long will it take for the teens to replicate it?

Gandi Baat (Source)

Whether it is the show ‘GandiBaat,’ or it is ‘Mastram,’ or ‘’Rasbhari,’ all of them have tried to attract more and more viewer base by showing the ‘red light areas’. These shows are not your basic serials, they are enticing people with content that widens their thought process to wild imaginations.

Mastram (Source)

Cinematography  loaded with a mix of nudity and vulgarity and then creating controversies around it, is the recipe for a hit these days. But what the heck  is this bizzare involvement of everyone in it, without any filter?  Even children are watching these. Parental controls don’t go a long way in controlling access.

These local web series having soft porn as its base, end up portraying Indians in a bad light. Most of these series have males as the casanovas and females, mostly the sex addicts are not the elites but ordinary people with religious beliefs and traditional clothing. That’s how they draw the viewers’ attention towards them  – by promoting sexual fantasies!

Sacred Games (Source)

Of all the series – Sacred Games and Mirzapur have been the most watched ones, followed by GandiBaat, the erotic theme-based production. Sacred Games received 60,979 votes with their growing demand with an average rating of 8.8, while Mirzapur received an 8.5 rating. 

These sex addict audiences want real porn! People with extreme desires and fantasies crave more vulgar and realistic content and fore-plays. And these so called ‘trending’ series excel in serving all kinds of obscenity in the name of artistic freedom.  Screw virtues, we just want TRP!

Spicing up the content

No matter what the series is about, the content is spiced up with nudity and sexual scenes. Political, criminal, love stories, – whatever it is, the narratives spice up their content for a wide user-base.

The Indian ‘stree’ being a form of the Goddess, is not so divine anymore! With the liberty in online content publishing and releasing of the Indian local web series featuring soft porn, the entertainment industry is leading the society towards DOOM!

Lust Stories (Source)

Pre-screening to curb nudity and obscene content from the web series.

Source: Nagpur Today

A petition was filed by advocate Divya Ganeshprasad Gontia in October 2018, stating the streamed web series as vulgar and obscene. The Public Interest Litigation argues that such broadcasting is an offensive act under the Indian Penal Code, the Cinematograph Act, Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition Act) 1986, and the Information Technology Act 2000.

ShyamDewani, another advocate said that, with the freedom given, the content being delivered is getting more obscene day by day and is destroying the moral decorum of the societies. With easy accessibility, adult content is slowly poisoning children and also the under-aged teens. Teens tend to apply these in their daily lives, and land themselves in inappropriate situations. School kids are discussing ‘Mirzapur’ instead of their projects and assignments. As disgusting as you can imagine!

But who cares about the young minds & their psychology? It’s PURE BUSINESS for the platform owners and makers.

Even the adults are being over exposed to it. Expect more divorces, troubled relationships, break ups, fraudgery and extra marital affairs in the coming days, we are warning India.

But why?

Looks like the makers are running out of story ideas, creativity and film making abilities and selling sexual content comes easy! PORN sells!!! And these cheap web series are pushing people into it.

TheBossMonk throws an open challenge to all content creators – Make some wholesome family entertainers without cuss words or something so inspiring or hard hitting that completely changes people’s perspective about something or someone. Or something outrageously funny or entertaining.

If the movies that are showcased in the cinema halls have a censor board, why can’t these shows have that too?

Further, on the PIL argument, the court gave orders that no national or international content should be published on the platforms directly. The high court also directed the concerned ministries for the same. Despite the directives of the court, the guidelines and censorship is not being followed.

From 2018 to 2020, and still, obscene content is being published randomly and being bombarded, spoiling and distorting the mentalities of the audience.

WHAT A SHADOWY WORLD WE LIVE IN?

It’s really upsetting to see these  web series getting immense popularity and ratings.  People consuming such content are sole perverts. But all said and done, some level of censorship by the govt. or film division, based on common decency, is needed to regulate the content. Soft porn merging with web series needs to be stopped and looked at!

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High Population of India: An Asset or a Liability?

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We worry about ‘Population Explosion’. To the extent that some ‘intellectuals’ even propose to encourage same sex marriage to control it. Rib tickling ideas people get and out of nowhere.

Jokes apart, we believe that increasing population is not that much of a big deal if as a nation we know how to manage it.

Mahesh lives in the rural part of India. He works as a farmer and fends for his family through agricultural income. He has six kids who live in a cramped house and eat whatever their father produces on the farm. The whole society looks at Mahesh in disdain and calls him stupid for contributing to the elephantine Indian population. The government officials also teach him the importance of having a small family. Well, he can’t really help it anymore, can he? Can he let his kids vanish into thin air? This is the harsh reality of India.

Point to be noted that the rising Indian population is connoted as a liability, but the Chinese population is the biggest asset for their country? 

Source: https://hrsoftware.in/

Countries are termed as developed or underdeveloped or developing. This highly depends upon the people who are living there. You can make a name for your country or sit at home and criticize it for being the way it is.  

For an underdeveloped country like India, it is goddamn difficult to manage population growth as most of the people are illiterate. This leads to the economic crisis due wasted job opportunities.  Agriculture & farming provides employment to around 60% of the Indian population. But the condition of farmers is still deplorable.

However, in a developing country like China, the country’s citizenry has proved to be an asset. Yes! An asset as it means more human resources that would contribute towards the development and innovation.

Source: https://indianexpress.com/

Can the Indian population replicate better opportunities than China?

In terms of population, India stands 2nd after China,, with a population of about 135.26 crores. It is to be noted that we consider our population a liability, which is why the whole globe pitifully looks at us. If Indians start upgrading their skills and become educated, better days aren’t far away!

And if a nation like China, which has the highest population, can transform its human resource into an asset, why can’t the Indians do that?

With  the increased digitization due to COVID-19 pandemic, skilled and talented human resources are what every country requires for its technological and software growth. This justifies how skilled human resources are, an asset for any country.

Source: https://financialexpress.com/

On  Independence Day,  Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself expressed concern about population explosion and how handling this challenge will be a mammoth task. This is how you slay it Mr. PM:

More than 50% of the Indian population is below the age of 25. Every year, India produces 25% of the world’s engineers.

The Boss Monk ponders  why these intelligent and skilled individuals are called liability and not an asset?

Source: Imgur

More people  also means mixed talent. It just needs to be maneuvered in the right direction and manner.

So the answer lies in training, education, infrastructure and economic policies. It’s not the population rather the illiterate population that is a burden. Focus has to be on creating job opportunities by opening up the markets and becoming more global.  Instead of just luring people for vote banks.

No one ever wonders why the best brains of India have shifted their base to other countries. We are not just talking about Satya Nadella or Sundar Pichai but even common engineers, doctors migrate to foreign lands the moment they get an opportunity. And that’s mainly because the current political, professional and business environments, rip through their emotional levels and kill creativity along the way.

India needs to provide fertile grounds to nurture its people and avoid brain-drain.

Source: https://www.rappler.com/

The opportunities are on the rise, if only…

With the Galwan clash, Uyghur genocides, and the COVID pandemic, the dragon is no more in any nation’s good books. Foreign companies are shifting their base to India because of the demographic qualities it offers.

Multinationals like Google and Facebook have promised to invest about billions of dollars into the Indian markets. With such a huge amount of money backed by a skilled workforce, India can be a golden bird again.

With various investments pouring in and a surge in India’s unicorns, training, education and the right kind of environment can make India the next Silicon Valley.

That’s how it can convert the population liability into a promising asset.

Or they can just let this opportunity slip through and succumb to the dark hole of being a liability.

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I Live Alone, Breathe Fire And Take Care of My Own Fucking Self

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Sassy, Classy and a lil bad Assy

Stereotypically, women are expected to live a sheltered life with other people and there is a huge stigma around women to live alone. Many people in a woman’s life will stop her from living alone, majorly blaming the safety issue. Our society is conditioned in a way that people are scared of seeing women progress and become more independent and live freely.

Women are supposed to find a partner, a companion to depend upon. It makes women’s life supposedly happier.  Men are glorified for being the lone wolf who protects everyone. But who made these norms?

Society has been brainwashed with the absurd concept of women being the weaker gender. It has made us believe that women can’t stand alone, women can’t travel alone, they can’t go out late at night and they might be making millions but they can’t live alone.

Who will break this stigma? 

Who will change this concept?

Aren’t you the one who can take the stand for millions of women who are subjected to this philosophy?

If you ever felt that you won’t be able to live alone, think again. We have 6 reasons to believe that women would enjoy and benefit more in living alone at least once in their life:

1. You are the role model and stereotype breaker

When you start living alone, you have already become a rebel for society. But guess what? You are also the hero for a million women out there who are suppressed in their houses. The society and influencers often talk about independent women, but do they preach it in reality? Maybe yes, maybe no. But remember that now you have become the real idol and influencer for many! Many women have broken down the stereotypes and have walked over the thought process of the age-old generations.

independant women
Source: https://8tracks.com/

2. The journey of self-love

When you start living alone, you unconsciously start a journey of self- discovery, and self- love. Since you are responsible for everything around the house and your own survival and safety, you invest your time wisely and treat yourself better. Many women believe that they need the help of other people, mostly men, to do laborious work around the house. But as you become more self- sufficient, you learn to do things on your own. You feel accomplished and proud of the living space you have created for yourself. You take care of yourself and do things out of your comfort zone like killing a cockroach or sleeping alone under a roof. You feel independent and happier with the person you have become.

3. You start enjoying your own company

In the beginning, we agree that not every woman would be comfortable living alone. In fact, you will feel lonely sometimes. You would find the silence too loud and be scared of every little sound.

But little by little, when you get accustomed to the living space you have, as you customize it to your own preferences, you will feel at home. You will start looking forward to going home and enjoy doing chores alone. You won’t have to follow a schedule around the house in accordance with other residents. There are no deadlines for coming back home. Do what you please.

Stereotypically, women are expected to live a sheltered life with other people and there is a huge stigma around women to live alone. Many people in a woman’s life will stop her from living alone, majorly blaming the safety issue. Our society is conditioned in a way that people are scared of seeing women progress and become more independent and live freely. Women are supposed to find a partner, a companion to depend upon. It makes women’s life supposedly happier. Men are glorified for being the lone wolf who protects everyone. But who made these norms? Society has been brainwashed with the absurd concept of women being the weaker gender. It has made us believe that women can’t stand alone, women can’t travel alone, they can’t go out late at night and they might be making millions but they can’t live alone. COVID causing divorces now - what_? Who will break this stigma? Who will change this concept? Aren’t you the one who can take the stand for millions of women who are subjected to this philosophy? If you ever felt that you won't be able to live alone, think again. We have 6 reasons to believe that women would enjoy and benefit more in living alone at least once in their life: 1. You are the role model and stereotype breaker When you start living alone, you have already become a rebel for society. But guess what? You are also the hero for a million women out there who are suppressed in their houses. The society and influencers often talk about independent women, but do they preach it in reality? Maybe yes, maybe no. But remember that now you have become the real idol and influencer for many! Many women have broken down the stereotypes and have walked over the thought process of the age-old generations. Source: https://8tracks.com/hercampusaberdeen/independent-women 2. The journey of self-love When you start living alone, you unconsciously start a journey of self- discovery, and self- love. Since you are responsible for everything around the house and your own survival and safety, you invest your time wisely and treat yourself better. Many women believe that they need the help of other people, mostly men, to do laborious work around the house. But as you become more self- sufficient, you learn to do things on your own. You feel accomplished and proud of the living space you have created for yourself. You take care of yourself and do things out of your comfort zone like killing a cockroach or sleeping alone under a roof. You feel independent and happier with the person you have become. 3. You start enjoying your own company In the beginning, we agree that not every woman would be comfortable living alone. In fact, you will feel lonely sometimes. You would find the silence too loud and be scared of every little sound. But little by little, when you get accustomed to the living space you have, as you customize it to your own preferences, you will feel at home. You will start looking forward to going home and enjoy doing chores alone. You won’t have to follow a schedule around the house in accordance with other residents. There are no deadlines for coming back home. Do what you please. http://yourdost.com/blog/2016/12/motivational-quotes-for-working-women.html 4. You become more self- sufficient Since you are living alone, you are responsible for everything. You don’t have a guardian to depend on for food, laundry, or grocery. Even though you can have a helper to help you with chores around the house, you will be responsible for making that choice. Who to hire as a helper, plumber, etc. You will have to maintain a house budget and focus on how to spend money. Overall, your management skills will increase and you will become a person with better judgment skills. 5. You become more productive According to recent studies, women who live alone are more professionally successful. Since you will live alone, you will also have a lot of time in your hand. Even if you invite people at home or come late at night, you would be in control. Due to COVID-19, most of us are working from home and this is going to be the trend for a couple of months atleast. Therefore, figuratively speaking you still have a lot of time to invest in other things. And who hasn’t ever said, “I will do this if I had more time”? We are sure that even you have said that for something in your life at some point in time. So if women live alone, they tend to find other activities they can dedicate themselves to. From painting, reading more books, cooking, yoga, joining a class, or even learning a new course or language, you can do it all. 6. You start appreciating the people in your life Ever since you start living alone and do things around the house, you realize that daily chores are harder than they look. Even cooking three meals daily is tough, you start missing your mother or friends who used to cook for you. You appreciate their efforts and stop complaining like before. You become a thankful person, check on people often and put efforts in maintaining your relationships. This is also because women who live alone tend to be happier than before. When a person is happy it’s natural for them to share their happiness and spread it. You learn and realize the importance of the people who love and appreciate you. So what is stopping you from living alone? Don’t let other people delude you. Be the woman who can make a change. The Boss Monk feels that every woman should experience full independence and have an option to live life freely on her own terms. Don’t let society stop you from being the real boss!
Source: http://yourdost.com/

4. You become more self- sufficient

Since you are living alone, you are responsible for everything. You don’t have a guardian to depend on for food, laundry, or grocery. Even though you can have a helper to help you with chores around the house, you will be responsible for making that choice. Who to hire as a helper, plumber, etc. You will have to maintain a house budget and focus on how to spend money. Overall, your management skills will increase and you will become a person with better judgment skills.

5. You become more productive

According to recent studies, women who live alone are more professionally successful.

Since you will live alone, you will also have a lot of time in your hand. Even if you invite people at home or come late at night, you would be in control. Due to COVID-19, most of us are working from home and this is going to be the trend for a couple of months at least.

Therefore, figuratively speaking you still have a lot of time to invest in other things. And who hasn’t ever said, “I will do this if I had more time”? We are sure that even you have said that for something in your life at some point in time. So if women live alone, they tend to find other activities they can dedicate themselves to. From painting, reading more books, cooking, yoga, joining a class, or even learning a new course or language, you can do it all.

6. You start appreciating the people in your life

Ever since you start living alone and do things around the house, you realize that daily chores are harder than they look. Even cooking three meals daily is tough, you start missing your mother or friends who used to cook for you. You appreciate their efforts and stop complaining like before. You become a thankful person, check on people often and put efforts in maintaining your relationships. This is also because women who live alone tend to be happier than before. When a person is happy it’s natural for them to share their happiness and spread it. You learn and realize the importance of the people who love and appreciate you.

So what is stopping you from living alone? Don’t let other people delude you. Be the woman who can make a change.

The Boss Monk feels that every woman should experience full independence and have an option to live life freely on her own terms. Don’t let society stop you from being the real boss!

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