Spy cams do the trick for movie pirates

April 13, 2013 10:42 pm | Updated November 16, 2021 10:26 pm IST

Want to watch the latest Telugu movies? You don’t have to stand in serpentine queues or shell-out more to purchase tickets online. A new kind of piracy is now enabling smartphone users to watch the latest movies on their mobile phones within two days after they hit screens across the State.

Right from the Prabhas-starrer Mirchi to Junior NTR’s Baadshah , pirated versions of many Telugu movies are already being circulated through mobile phones.

For this, one does not have to download any special software or application. All one needs is a memory card on their handsets.

How it is done

Those involved in making such pirated films use spy cameras mounted on pens and wrist watches or portable digital camcorders to record movies in cinema theatres. They later copy the complete movie into CDs or transfer them into memory cards through data cards. Initially, they circulate the movies free of cost to interested persons and later collect money from them depending on the star cast, says film producer T. Prasanna Kumar.

A habitual ‘pirate’, Manoj from Rajasthan is famous for adopting such methods. Along with three of his associates, Manoj would visit a multiplex on the pretext of watching the movie and record it using a spy camera. He would then make copies of the film on discs and sell them.

Portable digital camcorders having the facility of recording anything up to 60 hours are being used regularly, film industry sources said.

Rural nexus

The nexus between some owners of C-category theatres in villages and the pirates too is resulting in circulation of the latest movies on mobile phones. These would be recorded either after the night show or before the start of the morning show by paying a hefty amount to the theatre owner. Cable operators too were indulging in similar activities.

Producers said the matter was brought to the notice of the Crime Investigation Department (CID) but nothing concrete has been done till date. The film industry too has raised concerns about the loss of revenue due to rampant piracy .

The latest trend of piracy through mobile devices would further dent the collections of big budget cinemas, they rued.

Telangana Film Chamber of Commerce president M. Vijayender Reddy admitted that a few theatre owners were resorting to such practices due to the huge sums being offered by the gangs. Film technicians were also found abetting such activities, he said, adding that the sale of such CDs is pandemic in Chennai-bound trains.

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