The five-decade-old Shanthi Theatre, a landmark property owned by the family of the late thespian ‘Sivaji’ Ganesan, is set for a makeover with a modern commercial and entertainment complex to come up in a joint venture.

Chennai-based Akshaya Pvt Ltd has entered into a joint venture with the owners to develop the one-acre property, according to T Chitty Babu, Chairman and CEO, Akshaya.

Chitty Babu said the project promoted through a special purpose vehicle, Akshaya Leisure Pvt Ltd, will be on the theme of entertainment and leisure. The joint venture was signed on Monday and the project will start by the end of the year.

The property on the arterial Anna Salai and part of the Central Business District will emerge a new landmark and rejuvenate the commercial market in the area, he said.

G Ramkumar, film producer and son of ‘Sivaji’ Ganesan, said one of the components of the complex will be a multiplex. Shanthi Theatre, which has screened movies of three generations of stars beginning with Sivaji’s movies and his son Prabhu’s and grandson Vikram Prabhu’s films, will soon be seen in a new avatar.

G Prabhu, said the actor-family has entered into the joint venture as Akshaya has the expertise in real estate development. But the family’s business is closely knit with the entertainment industry and the new project will be an ‘entertainment centre’.