Agent has turned out to be a mega disaster at the box office and it’s repercussions are still being felt by those involved.
Firstly, Satish of Gayatri Films paid Rs 30 crores for the AP and Telangana theatrical rights of Agent. This was before Covid season.
Due to the Covid impact, Agent’s production costs shot up steeply and the producer Anil Sunkara ended up spending way more than Akhil’s market. The high priced AP-TS rights also couldn’t compensate the production costs.
The non theatrical rights were also sold before Covid which later turned out to be a blunder. There was a boom in Telugu OTT space after Covid and films went for higher prices. But the makers of Agent couldn’t cash in on the boom as the deal was signed before Covid.
All factors combined, Anil Sunkara saw table losses with Agent even before the release.
After the release, Gayatri Satish ended up incurring losses of Rs 26 crores, such was the extent of Agent disaster. He then seeked Rs 15 crores compensation from the producer.
But the issue is that a non-recoverable advance agreement was signed between Satish and Anil. So the distributor has no legal right to seek compensation. Even if the producer is to consider compensating out of good will, he can’t be compensating Rs 15 crores, as quoted by the distributor.
The distributor was first supposed to pay even the GST for the Rs 30 crores deal. But what he did was pay Rs 26 crores to the producer and skipped paying the GST. Now, the producer himself will have to pay the GST.
On top of it, the distributor kept badmouthing the producer saying he isn’t compensating for the huge losses. This didn’t sit well with Anil.
The distributor hoped that Anil would give him the rights of Bholaa Shankar as a compensation but that didn’t happen. Anil sold the rights to Vigneshwara films, like he is entitled to.
The producer already saw table losses with Agent. Even if the film was box office blockbuster, the distributor would’ve been the one seeing the profits, given the nature of the deal. The producer still would’ve been at great risk given the existent table risks. But sadly, the film bombed like anything, leaving everyone in a mess.
The curious case of Agent is such that the extent of losses is so big that it can’t be resolved even at the chamber or council.