India’s first D-Cinema release is the Tamil movie ‘Pudhuppettai’, at the Sathyam Cinemas, Chennai. Real Image Media Technologies, the company that has conceived and developed Qube Cinema in India, is looking to start digital satellite transmission of movies to cinema halls from its next release, ads included.
‘Pudhuppettai’ was completely mastered and encoded on QubeMaster for its release digitally in theatres equipped with Qube Cinema and other MXF Interop digital cinema servers.
Kiran Reddy, MD, Sathyam Cinemas, said, “We are extremely happy that India can be proud of its entry into the D-Cinema content with the release of ‘Pudhuppettai’. Hopefully, we should have more Indian content made for D-Cinema.
Of the three D-Cinema screens in India, two are at Sathyam Cinemas, while the third is at Infosys, Bangalore. There are around 800 D-Cinemas installed across the world, and the cost of upgrade is a factor for it not taking off in India yet. While a D-Cinema set-up can cost upwards of Rs 50 lakh, the best quality options from E-Cinema (all other Digital Cinema) cost only Rs 15 lakh.
Said Jayendra Panchapakesan, Director, Real Image, “With the release of ‘Pudhuppettai’, we have met the Hollywood standards of D-Cinema. We are happy with this achievement and the quality achieved on screen is there for everyone to see.”
While ‘Pudhuppettai’ will release digitally in 17 cinemas, the only D-Cinema screen would be the one at Sathyam. Sathyam Cinemas is looking to equip all its screens with D-Cinema projectors in due course, including the new screens it plans to set up in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.
Real Image has signed up with 72 theatres across Tamil Nadu of which 52 are operational E-Cinemas today; and 20 of the Digital Cinemas are under installation. The company hopes to start satellite transmission of movies to the theatres from its next release. This was expected to happen in the next 15 days or so, and the wiring was complete, said a company official.