Filmmaker Karthik Subbaraj’s latest production “Penguin” is not taking the traditional route of a theatrical release. He says his film premiering on an OTT platform is somewhat unusual, but he doesn’t regret the decision.
After its trailer came out, the film became a talking point for moviegoers. Many fans took to Twitter and posted that after “Baahubali 2″and “Saaho”, “Penguin” grabbed the third spot in the “most viewed Telugu trailer on YouTube in 24 hours” list.
Asked if waiting for things to normalise would have been a better option for the film, Karthik told IANS: “Before taking this decision, we had discussed the pros and cons. Theatrical release and OTT are different, but ultimately we wanted the film to reach the audience. Any filmmaker would want more audience to watch the film. That is also happening in a big way. It’s going beyond borders, states and countries. Many people are eagerly waiting for it to premiere on Amazon Prime Video. It is a big thing happening to the film. We don’t regret it.”
He is concerned about how to keep a track of the audience’s reactions though.
“This is new for us. When it’s a theatrical release, we watch a show with the audience and we know how they are reacting to it. We get an idea. This is a completely different ballgame. We are not sure how we will know about their reactions,” he said.
What about re-releasing the psychological thriller in a theatre later? “I don’t think it is possible because it is an Amazon Prime exclusive. I don’t think we have a legal way to theatrically release it later. I am not sure. If there is a possibility, then we will do so,” he replied.
While “Penguin” is produced by Karthik, it marks the directorial debut of Eashvar Karthic.
Didn’t he feel like taking the reins of the film himself? “No. We had started our company to produce feature films and promote new directors. That’s why I just produced it,” said Karthik, known for directorials like “Pizza” and “Petta”.
The film’s cast is led by National Award-winning actress Keerthy Suresh.
“Once we the script was ready, we needed a very good performer. The entire film is on her performance and character. The director felt she (Keerthy) would suit the character,” he said.
The Tamil-Telugu bilingual, which also has a Malayalam dubbed version option, will premiere on June 19.