Movie lovers who were looking to watch new films this Diwali after months of lockdown across the state faced a setback when the Tamil Film Active Producers Association (TFAPA) announced that they were not planning on getting any new films to come out in theatres stating they are not happy with the terms associated with the Virtual Print Fee (VPF). With theatres in Tamil Nadu reopening today (November 10), there had been expectations among Tamil cinema lovers for new films to release in light of Diwali on November 14 this year. 

Considering the Festival of Lights is a huge day for film aficionados to catch up on big movies in the theatres, this year won't see such fanfare owing to the coronavirus pandemic. It is to be noted that 'Thalapathy' Vijay's last three films had spearheaded the Diwali releases over the past three years starting with Mersal (2017), Sarkar (2018) and Bigil (2019). All of the three Vijay films turned out to be raging box office blockbusters, with 2020 turning out to be nothing more than a dud with no big star releases. 

Having said that, the TFAPA on Monday issued a statement saying they would not be allowing the release of any new films following the terms of VPF suggested by the digital service producer (DSP), Qube Cinemas Technologies. In response, QUBE issued a statement denouncing the boycott by TFAPA calling it unethical. A leading provider of end-to-end digital cinema technology solutions, QUBE on Tuesday dropped a massive announcement that has now brought cheer to cinema lovers. 

In an official statement, QUBE has announced "a 100% waiver of Virtual Print Fee (VPF) for the month of November 2020 for all filmmakers to help release new movies post the lockdown." Their statement further reads as follows: "The COVID-19 pandemic has brought cinema production and distribution to a grinding halt. As different industries are slowly resuming business, Qube believes that it is imperative that all stakeholders in the industry support each other during the revival."

"Qube is of the understanding that providing this full discount on VPF would enable producers and exhibitors release new movies during the festive Diwali season, help kickstart cinema operations and finally get the industry back on its feet again. Only charges for logistics of content delivery and key management, both for DCI and E-Cinema content, will be applicable," it added. The statement concluded saying, "Qube wishes everyone a happy and prosperous Diwali and hopes to see audiences celebrating in style back at the theatres." Although several re-releases have been announced and old films are set to be screened for some more time as a measure to revive the experience of the movie-watching experience in theatres, it now remains to be seen the call producers take in regard to the release of new films. Below is QUBE's complete statement: