In Board of Control for Cricket in India the rate card shall apply. No concessions. Not even for a Bharat Ratna. Not for the man who has been a big money spinner for BCCI. Whose class has been crucial to determine the value of many a BCCI videos. Or, a Rajya Sabha MP. Yes. Not even for Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar.
The BCCI has denied any discounts on video footage of Tendulkar’s batting and other significant videos required for his biopic – Sachin: A Billion Dreams. The production company 200 Not Out has requested the BCCI to provide the footage required for the biopic at discounted rates. The BCCI turned down the request, according to Devendra Pandey’s report for Indian Express.
The board have, however, agreed to provide Tendulkar’s famous three minutes and 50 seconds retirement speech at Wankhede Stadium on the last day of his lengthy career free of charge to the production company. Sachin: A Billion Dreams is slated to be released on May 26.
The BCCI has the copyright on all matches conducted under their banner and if anyone needs to use it for commercial purposes then they have to buy it. Even when MS Dhoni had approached the Indian board for footage from their library for a movie based on him — which was produced by his business partner Arun Pandey — he was told that the filmmakers would have to pay around Rs one crore. It is learnt even former India captain Sourav Ganguly had paid to procure some footage from the BCCI.
The BCCI in fact has a rate-card in place when it comes to providing videos and the price depends upon the matches and their significance. The footage is charged on ‘per seconds basis’. “The BCCI has a policy in place. The board didn’t give concession to Dhoni for his biopic then how can board change its rules for Tendulkar’s biopic. After all it’s a commercial movie, which is going to be shown in theaters. Already the trailer that they released has got more than a million hits. The board’s stance was also informed to the Committee of Administrators,” a top BCCI official told The Indian Express.
The official trailer released last week so far has been viewed over 2.1 crore times, whereas the teaser released earlier has over 80 lakh youtube views.
Meanwhile, in a statement, Ravi Bhagchandka, producer of the film and founder of 200 Not Out, said the negotiation with the BCCI is still on. “We are working with BCCI and have requested them that ‘Sachin: A Billion Dreams’ is a non-fiction biographical film that is being released theatrically and therefore consider revision of rates for the footage with the introduction of a new genre,” Bhagchandka said.
The company has been engaging with various cricketing associations across the world, including the BCCI. Bhagchandka said that they have purchased the rights from Cricket South Africa, Cricket Australia and the ICC. With regards to the BCCI, a significant amount of footage of matches where Tendulkar hit important milestones in his iconic career were identified.
“The BCCI by-laws have two categories for the fiction genre and documentary genre with differential rates for footage. The fiction genre usually requires limited amount of footage since most of the characters in the life of the cricketer are played by actors. The documentary genre as defined by BCCI cannot be released theatrically. Presently, the by-laws do not have a provision for a genre of a film which is a non-fiction biographical drama being released theatrically,” he said.