There is little doubt that the overseas market for Indian films is huge and is constantly growing. Over the years a number of films have had simultaneous releases in India and overseas. These days this has almost become the norm especially for films featuring top stars. In fact, the percentage of revenue generated from the overseas market has been rapidly increasing. With the Indian diaspora ready to "lap it up," Indian movie makers have slowly started to hike up the price of the ticket. Thus far, Bollywood films have been released in the US at a price per ticket hovering around $10-12. After the initial few weeks the price drops to about $8. which is more or less on par with Hollywood films. In the recent past, Indian film makers have started to "up the ante" so to speak. The price of tickets has been hiked even further! Dasvatharam opened at $15 a ticket! The first reaction of anyone who didn’t like the film was one of "Gosh! I want my money back !"
And now Superstar Rajnikath’s Kuselan tickets open at $20!
As far as I know even the biggest budget Hollywood films have never sold tickets at such outrageous prices.
Ultimately, film-making is a business. So it is understandable that those in the business want to make a profit. Products are often priced at what the market is willing to bare. But when you price a product so high that buyers start to feel that they are being fleeced, particularly when the same product was hardly a price sensitive one, you begin to wonder if the businessmen have gone too far. Besides, the viewer backlash caused by the hike in ticket prices, there could be other unintended consequences like for instance, an increase in piracy .
Are Indian film makers stretching their luck? Will the next Bollywood film starring Aamir Khan or Sharukh Khan be priced similarly at ridiculous prices? Maybe the price will have to go even higher before reality strikes and good sense prevails?