Cinemagoers will have a disappointing week as theatre owners in Andhra Pradesh have decided to shut shop from Thursday to protest against digital service providers (DSPs) overpricing issue.

Theatres will also remain shut in Tamil Nadu and Telangana as well.

Few theatre owners have, however, decided to continue screening films, thereby dividing the fraternity.

The Kannada and Malayalam film industries have decided to observe a one-day strike only.

Filmmakers are protesting against what they feel is an exorbitant virtual print fee, or VPF, charged by digital distribution companies.

The members of the Joint Action Committee (JAC) of the South film industry hope that DSPs like Qube, UFO, PXD and K Sera Sera digital cinema, among others, will relent and agree to their demand of a complete waiver of the Virtual Print Fee (VPF), reports New Indian Express.

Cinema halls in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh will stop screening films indefinitely, demanding reduction in the VPF levied by digital service providers (DSPs) for southern regional language movies.

This will hit big movie releases like Kanam, Needhi Naadhi Oke Katha and other Telugu films.

“The shutdown will continue till the DSPs bring down the VPF and eventually make it zero for southern regional language films, on par with English movies,” South Indian Film Producers Council convenor and producer and distributor Suresh Babu told reporters. “The DSPs are only charging a processing fee for Hollywood films as compared to Rs 10,000 - Rs 30,000 for a regional film," he further added.