Should makers release ‘full song promos’ of films?

There was a time, about a decade or so ago, when the audio version of popular songs actually helped sell tickets. Times have changed and the audience of today get to hear the song and also watch the full song promo – for free, without paying for the movie ticket.

While releasing song promos does help in increasing revenue for music companies – who earn from YouTube advertising, etc – it takes a lot away from the experience of watching a full film in theatre.

The audience can no longer listen to ‘Phir Bhi Tumko Chahunga’ or ‘Baarish’ from the upcoming ‘Half Girlfriend’ and wonder how the songs have been picturised on-screen.

Infact, the picturisation of songs isn’t even a talking point after the release of a film, because the audience has already watched it multiple times and there’s a good chance they are bored of it – weeks before its theatrical release.

A song like ‘Kala Chashma’ doesn’t even feel like it was a part of a film called ‘Baar Baar Dekho’. The song has been heard and watched by all, but noone has watched the film.

In 2013, Aditya Chopra decided not to release the song promos of ‘Dhoom 3’. The result? Each song in the film was a surprise for the audience and it added more value to the ticket too.

Not a single song of ‘Bahubali 2’ was released online. The result? Those who want to listen to the songs or watch the visuals again – are purchasing tickets to watch the film for the second and third time. This was the case before too – a section of audience would watch films just for the songs.

Ticket prices have increased, but value, unfortunately, has gone in the opposite direction.

Could ‘full song promos’ be one of the reasons for decreasing footfalls in theatres? Should makers release shorter song promos or only release video versions of one or two songs from the film? Why does a Salman / Aamir / SRK film even need full song promos when almost everyone is going to watch their films in theatres?

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40 Comments

  • Stop comparing and challenging all the current business norms with bahuballi 2. That’s a one off case. Bahubali 1 with this no song promo strategy wouldn’t have worked as well back then…sequels have some relaxation coz of natural anticipation.

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  • Great article…

    Hhmmm I can only tell of one instance in recent times that a good musical video made me wanna purchase a movie ticket when my general instinct would have been to otherwise shun the movie n that song that propelled me to watch the actual movie was ‘TUM HI HO’…!

    Aashiqui 2 had no interest for me… Im not a fan of Aditya n Shraddha didnt appeal to me but it all changed with that video… the way she looked blew me away n the way the song grew n grew on me made me wanna watch the placement of the song in the actual movie so I went against my general instincts n watched a movie that I wouldnt normally opt for.

    Yes in recent times songs like ‘Kala Chashma’ or High Heels’ dominate my ‘Most Played List’ on my phone but I stayed away from watching such rubbish movies.

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  • Why does a Salman / Aamir / SRK film even need full song promos when almost everyone is going to watch their films in theatres?

    You make me laugh indicine, when you include Srk in these statements just for the sake of writing… no one is going to watch srk movie these days

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  • You have made a very valid point . I feel the quality of music is not the same what it used to be in the last decade . It is quite disappointing to see the trend of Old songs being recreated with unnecessary rap and loud music . I feel one or two songs videos can be released if the makers feel these songs can bring people to cinemas . Also the trailer should be released on a particular period which should not be very early and also not very late . If a movie relies predominantly on music then people will not be excited to waste their money on tickets instead they will prefer to watch songs on YouTube or download movies in HD quality . !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  • Good article Indicine this shows that u r working hard & consistent other sites don’t catch up things like that

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  • I agree with you guys, audio is enough, let the audience experience the visual on big screen

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  • Yes…thats the point…people should release a trailer and song promos of 20-30 secs to build the hype…like in Dhoom 3 there were Malang and Kamli…in Baahubali evry song was special…it actually helped to built the curiosity and when you watch them in theatre its a whole new experience you get in the big screen…The plan is already in south films where they dont release full song promos..Hard time Bollywood too realise this and start making content movies with universal appeal and good visual treat instead depending on these marketing techniques to get the audience back in theatres.

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  • Two instances when the audience were surprised :
    Dil to pagan hai title song picturised also on Akshay Kumar and Sajan ji ghar aaye song from Kuch kuch hota hai picturised on Salman.
    Yes,video decreases the curiosity of watching the movie if not well made.

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  • Agreed bt da song also must be worth of its visuals nd melody..
    for eg halfgrlfrnd sngs wre touted to be melodious nd waited anxiously..
    Result- it dosnt make an impact even on audio listng

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  • Agree with you indicine in south they dont release video song promo just the audio gets released
    They should also follow this in bollywood

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  • This is what I was thinking , when I song promos released .. shanker films offers best song visuals for the last 25years ( though I was a disappointment even in song visuals , it was still far better than the rest ) .. when I watch shanker films .. I wait for songs to see the wonders.. but with “I” there was no surprise element .. ladio , tu chale , aila , isak thari , tum dono.. all released prior to film release

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  • “Why does a Salman / Aamir / SRK film even need full song promoswhen almost everyone is going to watch theirfilms in theatres?”

    Pointed noted bro….I am agree with u @Indicine

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  • To some extent, yes you are right, Song Promo does not required for Salman/Aamir/Srk movies, but I think even if they release song promo it does not make any difference to their movies, and reason is obvious that everyone wants to watch their movie at any cost……

    For Bahubali 2 also I don’t think song promo does any affect whether they release it before or not….and if I am not wrong then none of Bahubali 2 song is good or famous even after the release of movie….

    And for Dhoom 3 its the brand of Dhoom that work for the film not songs…..

    Yes for movies like Half Girlfriend and other small movie (or which cast new actors) it may affect, but then they need song promos to create buzz, otherwise no one will come to watch their movies (I mean the neutral audience)…..

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  • Very good and sensible article, I really think that when choregraphies are a major part of the show (in a Bhansali movie for example) it spoils too much to see the songs before.

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  • For Salman/Aamir/Srk people don’t go theater to watch songs, they buy ticket to watch their favorite stars (for fans) and to experience great movie (for neutral audience)…..

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