Moser Baer Is Everywhere
Last fortnight, I was in Landmark,Chennai, looking for the dvd prints of Ritwick Ghatak’s films in the section they were around for a couple of months. I could only find moser baer dvds in Tamil in the place of Ghatak’s films and youngsters shuffling through the yellow plastic covers of moser baer eagerly. I had to spend some time locating the Ghatak collection, which got shunted to an obscure place.
At Rs.34 per dvd and Rs.28 per vcd, the moser baer is a great attraction in book stores, grocery stores and even platform stalls. Reports speak of moser baer’s burgeoning collection of titles in many Indian languages. The dominant pitch ofÂ the mainstream Indian media when moser baer entered the home video market was that it was an anti-piracy drive, even though the company saw it as a big opportunity to get a decent pie of the Rs.8000 crore film market. I can not see the villain of pirates in the yellow plastic covers of moser baer. I see only the looming death of the re-release market for films of yesteryear stars and superstars. Barring a collection of MGR’s films and probably a couple of Sivaji Ganesan’s films, the re-release market will vanish sooner than moser baer’s next move to price their dvds lower than the price of drumstick with which they share the shelves on Chennai’sÂ grocery stores.