Chairman of Pakistan Film Exhibitors and Distributors Association (PFDA) Zoraish Lashari told media cinema owners and other stakeholders in the industry have been hit by the decision to impose a temporary suspension on screening of Indian films.
A lot of investment has been made into upgrading or building new cineplexes and multiplexes and the business at this time is dependent on screening of latest Indian films,’ he said. Lashari said the cinema owners and exhibitors had only imposed a self-imposed suspension of screening of Indian films and that it was not a ban.
The Pakistan Film Exhibitors and Distributors Association, which includes most owners of cineplexes, multiplexes and single screen cinemas in the country, had announced to ‘temporarily’ stop screening Indian films soon after tensions escalated between Pakistan and India over cross border firing incidents in late September. The exhibitors and cinema owners had taken the decision voluntarily after the Indian Motion Pictures Producers’ Association (IMPPA) announced a ban on Pakistani artistes and technicians working in India.
Mr Lashari said that first unreleased Indian films would be screened after which they would have negotiations with Indian distributors to continue the import of movies into Pakistan. The Media and Marketing Manager of a major chain of cineplexes, Sabina Islam, said 75 per cent of the revenues generated in the industry came from screening of Indian films.