As the much-awaited Goods & Service Tax is all set to be implemented from July 1st across India, the movie ticket rates are set to soar in Telugu states along with other regional film industries as the Entertainment Tax and Service Tax levied by the state governments were lesser than the imposed GST. Even as Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has agreed and proposed a two tax structure for cinemas, still the movie ticket rates in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh are going to see a hike.
As per the GST, the fresh rates of movie tickets in Telangana are as follows. For the air-conditioned cinemas in GHMC region, the first class ticket from July 1st is going to be Rs 120 and the lower class ticket is going to be Rs 40. In Municipalities in Telangana, the first class ticket from July 1st would cost Rs 80 and the lower class ticket would cost Rs 30. Whereas in Panchayats, the first class ticket would be priced at Rs 70 and the lower class ticket is priced at Rs 20. The above ticket rates are as per the GST and will be effective from July 1. Meanwhile, the ticket rates in multiplexes are going to see steep hike as the GST would be levied at 28 per cent.
According to recent revision by GST Council, the cinema tickets below Rs 100 will be charged a GST tax of 18 per cent while cinema tickets above Rs 100 will be charged a GST tax of 28 per cent. While the Gross figures of films are set to go up with the increase in ticket prices, it is expected to affect the footfalls into theatres and this in turn may affect the overall revenue. However, it all depends on talk of the film and reviews. Since the ticket prices become dearer, audience may think twice now before burning their pockets in multiplexes which are already turning out to be costlier to the movie buffs.
Film producers, distributors, exhibitors and trade is anxiously watching the move and is holding breath on how audiences respond to the ticket hike. Certainly there is a mixed reaction among industry as it is more likely to affect the prospects of small and medium-budget films and films with new cast compared to star-studded films made with high-budget.