MANGALORE: The cinema viewing experience for Mangaloreans underwent a dramatic change in 2006 - when the first three-screen multiplex started operating in the first mall of the city. Adlabs (now Big Cinemas) multiplex started with three screens and added one more screen a year later. Since then there has not been much of a change in the multiplex scene in the city.
But it is all set to change in another 18 to 24 months with three more multiplex chains - Inox, PVR (Priya Village Roadshow) and Mexican Cinepolis - entering the market with a total of 21 screens. This should be good news for patrons as they not only will have more choice, but viewing costs, which is now on the higher end for a small city like Mangalore should come down considerably due to competition.
While Inox will have 10 screens at the Plama Mall at Kulshekar, PVR will have six screens at the Forum Mall by Prestige Group at Pandeshwar. Prestige Group spokesperson said that the mall with 36,814 sq mts of commercial space and 88,092 sq mts of built up area will be ready in 2013. Our endeavour is to have the multiplex open at the same time as the mall opens,'' said the spokesperson.
The 10 screen multiplex at Plama Mall will open early 2014, says PMA Razak, Chairman and Managing Director of Plama Developers Ltd. The mall has a Gross Leasable Area (GLA) of 13.27 lakh sq ft making it one of the largest under construction mall in the state. This mall will also have a car elevator.
If all had gone well, the city should have had Cinepolis multiplex last year itself, but it has been embroiled in controversies. Cinepolis has already developed five screens at the City Centre Mall here, including a VIP screen. The District administration while rejecting the licence cited absence of several mandatory licences required under Karnataka Cinemas (Regulations) Rule 1971. A source from the mall said they may appeal to the high court against the district administration's order.
Meanwhile, a real estate source said apart from these 21 screens many more are in the offing as developers of all big malls want a multiplex in their malls. This ultimately will benefit the patrons as they will see lowering of ticket price. If there is competition, the new multiplexes will refrain from adding capital costs to the ticket price but will only include running cost. As of now, the multiplexes make close to 55% profits on food and beverages sold inside the multiplexes,'' the source added.