Rajkummar Rao's 'Srikanth' Breaks Barriers with Audio Description for Visually Impaired

Rajkummar Rao's film 'Srikanth' made history with its May 10, 2024, release in New Delhi, offering audio description through the XL Cinema app. This innovation enhanced the cinematic experience for visually impaired persons, providing equal access to entertainment.

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Aqsa Younas Rana
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Rajkummar Rao's 'Srikanth' Breaks Barriers with Audio Description for Visually Impaired

Rajkummar Rao's 'Srikanth' Breaks Barriers with Audio Description for Visually Impaired

The Rajkummar Rao-starrer film 'Srikanth' made history with its release on May 10, 2024, in New Delhi, India, by offering audio description through the XL Cinema app, enhancing the cinematic experience for visually impaired persons. The film, which tells the inspiring story of entrepreneur Srikanth Bolla, a visually impaired self-made billionaire, aims to break barriers for accessibility in the entertainment industry.

Why this matters: This initiative sets a precedent for inclusiveentertainment, promoting equal access to cinematic experiences for people with disabilities. As the entertainment industry follows suit, it can lead to a more inclusive and diverse audience, fostering greater empathy and understanding.

The XL Cinema app, which can be easily downloaded from the Play Store or App Store for free, provides audio description, making the movie more accessible to audiences with low vision and blindness. Visually impaired persons who attended the screening of 'Srikanth' at a multiplex in New Delhi shared their positive experiences with the audio description feature.

Kusum, a college student and movie buff, said, "With the help of this app, I was able to properly understand what was happening in the movie. I like Rajkummar Rao, he is an amazing actor." She added, "I have come here alone to watch a movie. It happened many times in the past that I was not able to understand nuances and had to take help of the person sitting next to me."

Ashutosh, another student, praised the initiative, saying,"I have seen a film after many years. Themovie experiencewas very good with the audio description. We are unable to properly understand a scene without audio description. "He emphasized the need for theatres to have arrangements for persons with disabilities, including audio description, sign language interpretation, detailed captions, and wheelchair accessibility.

Shivakant Singh, who works with a non-profit organization, shared his experience, stating, "This was my first experience and it was really good...I was not blind by birth. I suffered from a brain tumour and lost my vision in 2016." Inderpreet Singh, who works for an NGO, said, "Audio description should be available from the first day, first show. There are many cinemas not accessible to persons with disabilities."

Dipti Prasad, co-founder at XL Cinema, said,"With the app, the visually impaired feel more empowered, feel more independent about the content in the cinema."Thereleaseof 'Srikanth' with audio description marks a significant step towards breaking barriers for accessibility and enhancing the cinematic experience for visually impaired persons in India and beyond.