Cinemas Blame Distributors for Blocking Screening of ‘The Legend of Maula Jatt’

Bilal Lashari’s magnum opus is currently only being shown at a handful of cinemas in the country.

One of Pakistan’s biggest films to date, The Legend of Maula Jatt was opened to packed but limited cinemas across Pakistan and internationally from 13 October onward but despite garnering rave reviews and attracting large audiences, the domestic release has been marred by a deadlock between distributors and major cinema houses across Pakistan.

Reportedly, Capri and Atrium are the only two cinemas that are currently airing The Legend of Maula Jatt.

Karachi’s largest cinema house, Nueplex Cinemas, issued an official statement on Instagram on Monday to clarify why it is not screening The Legend of Maula Jatt and blamed the movie’s distributors for demanding terms that are “out of industry norms”.

It stated:

We feel that it is highly unfortunate that the distributor of the title The Legend of Maula Jatt is asking for exhibition terms which are out of the industry norms. Such rigid terms cannot be afforded by exhibitors, especially during times of economic instability.

According to reports, the film’s distributors are demanding that cinema owners increase the ticket prices by Rs. 200 per ticket for the first 10 days of the film’s screening.

Nueplex Cinemas concluded,

We are hoping for a fairer approach in the future as we are always here to welcome and screen any Pakistani film with open arms.

Another Karachi cinema house, The Arena, issued a similar statement on its Instagram, apologizing for the delay, also blaming the distributors.

It assured that its negotiations with the distributors are ongoing and it will soon get back to everyone with “good news”.

Twitterati has no sympathy for the distributors and the cinema houses under these circumstances. A tweep called the Nueplex Cinemas out for being hypocrites as it is willing to sell popcorn worth Rs. 50 for Rs. 500 but not ready to screen the movie.

Other tweeps agreed:

Despite the domestic setback, Bilal Lashari’s film continues to rake in big numbers worldwide. Recently, and became the fastest Pakistani film to cross Rs. 25 crores in revenue worldwide in just three days as per a tweet yesterday.

The Legend of Maula Jatt is a reboot of the 1979 cult classic Punjabi movie Maula Jatt. Produced by Ammara Hikmat, with dialogues penned by Nasir Adeeb, it was created as a joint venture of Encyclomedia and Lashari Films in association with AAA Motion Pictures.

The film stars Fawad Khan, Hamza Ali Abbasi, Mahira Khan, and Humaima Malick in the lead roles.

What do you think about Nueplex Cinemas’ statement about The Legend of Maula Jatt? Let us know in the comments below.


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