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Watch IPL Live in Cinema Halls - Tickets launched

Want to watch an Indian Premier League (IPL) match live? No need to go to the stadium. Just book a ticket at the nearest cinema hall and enjoy it in airconditioned comfort.

For the first time in the country, a unique project will be implemented to show the forthcoming IPL-2010 matches live in over 1,000 cinema halls around the country, including around 50 in Mumbai, from March 12.

"Any match, played anywhere in the country, during the entire 45-day IPL-III season, shall be beamed live in multiplexes and single screen cinemas in a high definition digital format," an excited Sanjay Gaikwad, managing director of UFO Movies India Limited, which is spearheading the project, said Wednesday.

Cricket maestro Sachin Tendulkar has been roped in to popularise the concept - he bought and autographed the first cinema ticket for an IPL match.

The autographed ticket was purchased by Vikram Kakade, a die-hard cricket fan from Pune, for a whopping Rs.11 lakh, which will be donated to a city NGO, Apnalya.

"This is truly a brilliant initiative, especially for the far-flung regions of our country where cricket fans cannot experience the stadium energy. I am delighted to give away this first theatre ticket and wish all my fans a great experience watching cricket in cinema halls," Sachin remarked.

Later, Bollywood actress Priyanka Chopra presented a theatrical ticket of IPL-3 to Amit Jain, Operational Manager of Ford Figo, which is the main sponsor for IPL 2010 in cinemas.

As there are no major Bollywood releases slated during the IPL season, which coincides with the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) examinations, the venture would enable cinema halls to make up for lost revenue and the government would continue to earn entertainment tax.

"As for the patrons, they can watch the entire cricket match live on gigantic movie screens in air-conditioned comforts, without commercial breaks," Gaikwad said.

The participating cinema halls, including Cinemax, Fame, Inox, PVR, are making special arrangements to make the cricket in cinema halls a truly memorable experience.

There will be a carnival-like atmosphere with special multi-cuisine restaurants, live bands performing in the theatre foyers, cheerleaders to welcome the patrons, cricket merchandise stalls and gifts, Gaikwad said.

In Mumbai region, the live IPL cricket matches will be shown in New Excelsior, Meghraj, Movie Gem, Roxy, Star City, Jai Ganesh, Saaz, Broadway, Ashok and Anil in Ulhasnagar (Thane), and Broadway in Bhiwandi, among others.

(IANS)

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