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"Subedar Joginder Singh Attracted Big Studios Towards Pollywood" - Sumeet Singh Manchanda

By: Prakriti | October 9, 2018

Punjabi industry is in it's boom period. Not only are we seeing experimental movies coming up but there's also a global acceptance of our content at an unmatched level. With digitalization of media, we now have more platforms to cater to overseas audience. Netflix, Zee 5, Amazon Prime and many more have now shown keen interest to collaborate with Punjabi makers.

One such big collaboration happened recently when Netflix suddenly opened it's Punjabi film section for worldwide audiences. Though it had films from many other regions and languages but Punjabi was missing since long and if sources are to be believed, they were not even keen on Punjabi films as they thought that all Punjabi films are nothing more than just slaptick comedy.

But now, things have changed and the biggest of Punjabi films are now on Netflix.

While talking to the man Sumeet Singh Manchanda, who made this happen, we got to know that this decision was not taken by Netflix in a day. The team took enough time but one Punjabi film changed a lot. 

The production house which has been given movies like Subedar Joginder Singh, Parahuna, Needhi Singh, Tiger, Saade CM Saab and many more, was the first to crack a deal with Netflix. 

Sumeet revealed, ”We were in constant talks with Netflix about the digital content rights since a year. We are glad that Saga finally cracked the big deal with them. Our company hasn’t published our content, especially movies, for free viewership on YouTube and it's been years since we've been following this practice. It is because of the way we've managed our content digitally that big platforms have got attracted towards our catalogue. The reason was simple, we wanted it be on global platforms. Netflix is known for it's high quality content and getting a place on such a platform is quite a big deal. That's the reason why we chose to give up our revenue that could come from YouTube by putting our movies for free viewership. That part of the revenue could  have been huge but we were waiting patiently for the right opportunity. Now, that our content is open on Netflix we can’t wait for the response. We hope that more and more people watch our regional movies and give us true feedback."

How is Netflix helpful to the Punjabi film  industry and to your company Saga Music?

"A platform like Netflix has a humongous audience. We are happy that movie buffs would get an opportunity to watch our regional cinema as well. Saga has forever strived to explore a variety of genres for movie lovers. The audience that would watch our content would know that Punjabi movies are much more than just comedy. When Punjabi movies become successful in getting a good response, it will lead to more profits for the makers, thus giving producers the motivation to try new and experimental subjects. From the industry point of view, the makers will make more profits by getting digitalized with such brands.

It has definitely helped our company by giving our content larger viewership. The block that we faced in Punjab due to monopolization of satellite channels, has now been declogged. We have seen that there are not even a handful Punjabi channels promoting good content. Due to monopolization in this market we have lost the charm of competition and production of good content. The same channels have been showing repetitive content and even the audience is bored of it.  For years, this was a major block for us but now with digitalization we seem to have a solution for this problem. 

Therefore, digitalization has certainly provided a larger market to the Punjabi makers but with the kind of competition that this market has, only the fittest can survive."

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