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Impose costs on Sukumar, other directors


Here is a controversial suggestion. Tollywood must seriously consider a design through which costs can be imposed on filmmakers who are notorious for inordinate delays.

'Pushpa 2' has put Allu Arjun's career in passive mode for three years. For the entire 2022, Bunny had no work to do because Sukumar was busy writing 'Pushpa 2'. The sequel went on the floors in early 2023, more than a year after 'Pushpa 1' was released in theatres.

Directors in any other film industry in the world would have readied 'Pushpa 2' within 1.5 years of the release of the first part. In Telugu cinema, though, horrible delays are normalized in the name of perfection.

Too much of glorification of filmmakers like Sukumar has ruined the work culture in Tollywood. Cinema-crazy fans are also to take the blame.

Imposing costs on filmmakers like Sukumar is hard because of the precious value they bring to the table. Allu Arjun, for example, wouldn't allow it to happen because he owes a lot to Sukumar. There is also a paucity of great filmmaking talent in Tollywood. The scarcity heightens the importance attached to Sukumar.

Here's where producers need to take a firm stance. Investing hundreds of crores in pan-Indian films is a significant financial risk. Implementing measures to incentivize on-time completion, such as slashing the director's remuneration by half for delays exceeding a certain timeframe (e.g., one year), could encourage a more focused and time-conscious approach from directors.