Variety

Hollywood set to take on Bollywood this summer

Meenakshi Verma Ambwani New Delhi | Updated on November 15, 2017

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Movies based on superheroes, sequels to bedazzle screens across India

The Men in Black will be back this summer. So will Superman and Batman.

IPL and Bollywood movies better watch out – there's threat from Hollywood as blockbuster franchise movies featuring super heroes and cute characters will storm Indian theatres this summer.

On April 27, Marvel Studio's The Avengers, which is distributed by UTV Motion Pictures is going to hit 800 Indian screens. It will also be dubbed in Hindi, Tamil and Telugu – that's even wider than Avatar, till now the biggest Hollywood blockbuster here.

Explaining the strategy behind such a wide release for an English movie, Mr Siddharth Roy Kapur, CEO, UTV Motion Pictures says, “In India, super hero movies, creature movies or disaster movies are popular and cut across both the big and small centres.”

Wider release

But Sony Pictures might top it in July. Its Amazing Spider Man, also featuring Indian actor Irrfan Khan, is expected to see an even wider release in India with 1,000 prints dubbed in three languages.

“From Sony's perspective, this is a significant year as we have a very strong line-up of movies and the growing penetration of multiplexes is expected to add to the box office collections for Hollywood movies,” said Mr Kercy Daruwala, Managing Director, Sony Pictures India. In May, Sony Pictures will be unleashing Steven Spielberg's Men in Black 3.

The other big franchisee movies in the pipeline areViacom 18 distributed Madagascar 3 in June, Dark Knight Rises and Ice Age: Continental Drift in July besides the Amazing Spiderman series. “Last July was the biggest month of the year with big Bollywood hits. This July, there is a strong Hollywood content line up,” says Mr Sunil Punjabi, CEO, Cinemax.

Super stars

June alone will see seven Hollywood movie releases including the Tom Cruise starrer Rock of Ages and GI Joe 2.

In India, Hollywood movie's share at the total box office has been steadily inching up – today it stands at 8-10 per cent. “The share of Hollywood's contribution to the overall revenue pie has almost doubled in the past two years,” says Mr Vikram Malhotra, COO, Viacom 18 Motion Pictures, which is distributing Hugo and Madagascar.

He added that marketing initiatives like getting stars such as Tom Cruise to travel to India is helping the Hollywood cause.

Regional movie dubbing has also helped Hollywood make inroads into India's smaller town and cities with nearly 30-35 per cent of the revenues coming from dubbed versions.

Mr Gautam Datta, COO, PVR says, “With the kind of marketing spends made by big Hollywood movies these days , their status is equivalent to a big Bollywood movie and can eat into the box office revenues of smaller Bollywood movies.”

>meenakshi.v@thehindu.co.in

Published on April 19, 2012

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