Posts Tagged ‘UTV’
December 29, 2009 12:38:18 PM IST
Bollywood Trade News Network
|CHANCE PE DANCE|
Backed by the success of 3 of the genre defining blockbusters of 2009 – KAMINEY, WAKE UP SID and DEV.D, UTV Motion Pictures announced an aggressive line up of 4 films for the period of January – March 2010.
The slate for 2010 kicks off with CHANCE PE DANCE, which has been directed by Ken Ghosh and stars Shahid Kapoor, as the talented and passionate Sameer with a never-say-die attitude and Genelia, as a beautiful and spirited choreographer, Tina. The film will have a worldwide release on 15th January.
HARISHCHANDRACHI FACTORY, India’s official entry to the Oscars this year, will hit the screens on 22nd January. This acclaimed Marathi film directed by Paresh Mokashi is a UTV production, co-produced with Paprika Media and Mayasabha. The film has also been screened for the BAFTA and Golden Globe juries, apart from various other film festivals.
PETER GAYA KAAM SE, a fast-paced action adventure movie with a romantic twist, is directed by John Owen. Starring Rajeev Khandelwal and Lekha Washington, this film is about Peter, a football crazy motorcycle taxi rider, who decides to turn his back on Goa and quit his job – until his sleazy loan shark boss Bosco persuades him to do one last job – the job that will change his life forever. The film is scheduled for a March 2010 release.
PAAN SINGH TOMAR, the true epic journey of a talented runner who turned into a rebel, has been directed by Tigmanshu Dhulia. It stars Irrfan Khan and Mahie Gill, and will be released in March 2010.
Siddharth Roy Kapur, CEO, UTV Motion Pictures said, “While 2009 has been a low year for the film industry in general, we released some interesting films which etched themselves in the minds of the audience. DEV.D, KAMINEY and WAKE UP SID created new benchmarks for what can now be perceived as commercial cinema. Our slate for 2010 promises to be a very entertaining mix and we are very excited to be bringing audiences such a wide array of interesting cinema.”
The much-anticipated releases by UTV in 2010 include Prakash Jha’s RAAJNEETI, Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s GUZAARISH, Anees Bazmee’s THANK YOU, Rajkumar Gupta’s NO ONE KILLED JESSICA, Vishal Bhardwaj’s EK BATAA SAAT, Aamir Khan Productions’ DELHI BELLY and PEEPLI LIVE.
A year after the release of the ill-received Delhi-6, director Rakeysh Omprakash Mehra is set to release the film with a new tragic ending.
The film was originally planned with Abhishek Bachchan’s character’s death at the end. Mehra, apparently with considerable pressure from his producer, UTV, decided to alter the ending to a happy one. Incidentally, Abhishek had strongly advised his director-friend against the ending.
A member of the cast says, “Abhishek and Rakeysh had many arguments on the subject. The producers felt that audiences will react adversely to Abhishek’s character dying. Although Rakeysh was unhappy with it, he shot the alternate ending.”
Now a year later, the character Roshan will die in a new version of the film to be released very shortly. Confirming these developments, Rakeysh says, “I made a mistake. I should have gone with my original script with the tragic ending. Going by the reactions I got after I showed the newly edited film at the Venice Film Festival in September, I am sure this is the right version of Delhi-6.”
The new version will coincide with Rakeysh embarking on his next directorial project, apparently the historical Mirza Sahibaan, which the director is now in the process of casting.
Rakeysh is also set to begin a professional story bank within his production house. The director says, “While there is an acute shortage of writers in our cinema, new writers seem to have no access to the mainstream banners. We want to give these writers a chance to bring their talents to our company.”
Rakeysh will also be introducing new directorial talent. “I am surprised at the number of new talented writer-directors who are coming to us with wonderful innovative ideas. I want to make these talented filmmakers a part of my team. I can’t make all the films that I want to. These directors can make some of them.”
The release of UTV’s next venture, Chance pe Dance, is just around the corner. But it seems that all is not well between the producers and the director, Ken Ghosh. Apparently, after the infamous Jiah Khan episode where Genelia D’Souza replaced her, Ken wanted to increase the budget of the film from Rs 20 crores to Rs 24 crores.
However, UTV stuck to their guns and told him flatly that under no circumstances can he increase the budget. Ken had no option but to shoot the film with the allotted budget.
A source said, “Ken has not made a film in the past few years, so he wanted to make an extravagant film now. However, after the entire Jiah Khan episode, the budget went haywire, but UTV firmly refused more money, saying that a film with Shahid and Genelia cannot exceed 20 crores for it to be a saleable project.”
A source close to the production house said, “The budget of the film is Rs 20 crores and despite whatever pressures we had from the line producers, we made sure that the budget does not exceed the sum. There were issues during the making of the movie but we were firm about not going beyond the budget to make it a saleable proposition.”
Ken Ghosh had a different story to tell. He informed us, “It’s the opposite. We finished the film within the given budget. In fact, the last installment was returned to the producers and there were no issues at all.”
Posted December 22, 2009on:
Vidhu Vinod Chopra changes his mind about screening the Raajneeti promo during the interval of 3 Idiots, Prakash Jha is not surprised by the volte face
One wonders why Vidhu Vinod Chopra, whose 3 Idiots is definitely the most awaited film of 2009, is nervous and insecure just three days before the release. Why else would he ask UTV (distributors of Prakash Jha’s Raajneeti) to withdraw the Raajneeti trailer, which was scheduled to be shown during the interval of 3 Idiots? Or is this the brainchild of the marketing head of the film, Aamir Khan, who seldom likes to share the limelight with anybody else?
According to a source, Vidhu called up UTV and told them that he didn’t want the Raajneeti trailer screened during 3 Idiots. “This decision came in the wake of a private screening of 3 Idiots held recently. Everybody who saw the film spoke very highly about the trailer of Raajneeti and felt that it would be a very strong film. This set Vidhu’s mind ticking and he decided that he would rather do away with the trailer than have people distracted from 3 Idiots.”
|Vidhu Vinod Chopra||Prakash Jha|
Speaking from New York, Jha confirmed that UTV had informed him about Vidhu’s decision. He said, “Vidhu had seen the trailer of Raajneeti and told me that it would be a pleasure to screen it. But now he has developed cold feet at the last minute. UTV told me that Vidhu found that at a recent screening of 3 Idiots, people who saw the film were talking only about the trailer of Raajneeti. Vidhu hasn’t spoken to me but I learnt that he found the trailer of Raajneeti too powerful.”
But Jha also said that he knew this was coming. He added, “I know Vidhu since our FTII days. I had told UTV that I can’t trust Vidhu till the last moment. Woh kabhi decision leta hai, kabhi nahin leta hai, ek minute khush ho jata hai, doosre minute bahut pareshan ho jata hai. It’s not unusual. That is Vidhu’s nature. Ab kya karein?”
However, the trailer of Raajneeti has already been attached to the overseas prints, which have left Indian shores. How will he remove the trailer from those prints now? Jha replied, “That I don’t know. But I have heard that he will remove it from the prints to be released in India,” and quickly added, “I sympathise with Vidhu.”
We sent a text message to Vidhu asking why he reversed his decision to carry the trailer of Raajneeti, but the moody filmmaker did not reply.
Khans in attendance
While the entire industry has tried to get the three Khans together on the same platform, they have always been unsuccessful. However, now the three Khans will be together under one roof during the premiere of 3 Idiots on Wednesday night.
While Aamir, who stars in the film, has called everyone including his arch rival SRK and his friend Salman for the premiere. All of them have confirmed their presence. Even Amitabh Bachchan has confirmed that he will be attending the premiere, which makes it one of the biggest events of recent times.
It will be interesting to see the fireworks when the three Khans meet under one roof.
After Kurbaan was dismissed by the audience, Dharma Productions has decided to shoot Tarun Mansukhani’s Dostana 2 first, pushing back Nishikant Kamat’s next with John Abraham
Karan Johar’s production house Dharma now feels the need to pull up its socks especially after its biggest turkey in years, Kurbaan. Dostana director Tarun Mansukhani has been asked to complete the script for Dostana 2 immediately.
Tarun says, “We will start shooting the sequel in April 2010. I’m just about locking in the script. We want to give the film a nice summery look in London. So far, Abhishek Bachchan and John Abraham are the only cast members who are confirmed.”
In this rush to release a comedy which may prove to be more commercially viable, Nishikant Kamat’s (director of Mumbai Meri Jaan) film with John which was to start early 2010, has now been pushed to July 2010. Confirming this, the reclusive director says, “I think John has one other film to finish before he comes to my project. So I have more time to work on my script. I’ve been locked away in my native village most of this year writing the film.”
Kamat continues to tell us about the project, “I love the cinema of Karan Johar, Aditya Chopra and Sooraj Barjatya and that’s the kind of mass entertainment we’re attempting. John and I have been friends for a long time. We sat and discussed what kind of a film to make. We both thought an adventure-action-romance was a far bigger challenge than a topical subject.”
His film with John will be produced by UTV. And it’s likely that UTV would also be on board for Dostana 2. So a shuffle seems very much on the cards.
After the heavy losses Kurbaan incurred, UTV’s Siddharth Kapoor cautiously says, “We’re in a long-term association with Dharma. So the intention is to collaborate closely with them on their future productions. But nothing has been formalised for Dostana 2.”
This year hasn’t been great for Akshay Kumar as all his films have flopped at the BO, with an exception for Kambakkht Ishq which was average. De Dana Dan, which releases tomorrow, is the last film of Akshay in 2009 and it’s expected to be one of the biggest hits this year. The promos have been excellent, the film has wonderful star cast and is helmed by the comedy expert Priyadarshan. But most importantly, the film consists of all the hit combos which have worked big big time in the past! Let us have a look at these combos:
Akshay-Suniel-Paresh: The chemistry between the three actors worked wonders in Hera Pheri and also in its sequel, Phir Hera Pheri. The tigdi is super-hit and still in demand. In fact, any producer will be ready to pump as much money as needed if these three are ready to come together in a film!
Akshay-Katrina: They have been one of the most-popular jodis of Bollywood. Although their first film together, Humko Deewana Kar Gaye failed, their sizzling chemistry has worked in all other films. Even in De Dana Dan, both look wonderful together and they have also sizzling rain song in the film, Gale Lag Jaa, which is guaranteed to soar the temperature in the theatre!
Akshay-Priyadarshan: Akshay has till now worked on four films with Priyadarshan (Hera Pheri, Garam Masala, Bhagam Bhag, Bhool Bhulaiyaa) and all of them have been super hits at the BO. Even De Dana is expected to be another hit for the actor-director.
Priyadarshan-Venus: This is also a winning combination with 100% success rate. Venus produced Priyan’s Hungama, Hulchul and Garam Masala and all three proved to be successful. So there is little doubt that their fourth film together will work too. In Priyadarshan’s words, “I have always said that I am lucky for Ratan Jain (who heads Venus) and he is lucky for me”
Thus, De Dana Dan with all these factors going in its favour will definitely take a huge opening and if the film turns out well, there would be no stopping it!
Last Friday’s spectacular release, Kurbaan, has flopped which has shocked one and all. The film didn’t even take a decent opening inspite of big names associated like Karan Johar, Saif-Kareena and UTV and inspite of critical acclaim. I feel the major reason could be excessive violence which put a section of audiences away. Another would be its serious theme. I don’t buy the point at all that audiences weren’t interested in watching terrorism films. Anyways, it’s disappointing to see sincere efforts not getting their due, and that film like Tum Mile getting better opening than Kurbaan!
With Kurbaan’s debacle, this year has turned to be disappointing for UTV. In 2009, only 2 films of the production-Dev D and Kaminey worked at the BO while the rest-Delhi-6, Dhoondte Reh Jaoge, Agyaat, What’s Your Raashee? and Main Aurr Mrs Khanna failed. UTV also distributed Johar’s Wake Up Sid which ran successfully only in big city multiplexes. Let’s hope UTV will spring back in 2010!
2009 has been a very bad year for UTV. After three films — What’s Your Rashee?, Main Aur Mrs Khanna and Kaminey — failed to set the cash registers ringing, they were heavily banking on Karan Johar’s Kurbaan, directed by Rensil D’Silva.
But their hopes of having a hit were dashed with Kurbaan proving to be a turkey at the box-office.UTV had bought the film from Karan for about Rs 50 crore and released it across 1,700 screens.
One could understand if the audience gave it a thumbs down after watching it. However, the shocker is that the film didn’t even get a good opening when it released on November 20. Despite being a solo release, it barely managed 35 per cent occupancy on the first day. The box-office collections thereafter have been far from encouraging, flattering reviews from film critics notwithstanding.
Endorsing the fact that the film did not register more than 40 per cent collections in its first three days, trade analyst Amod Mehra says, “Shockingly, the collections on Sunday were even less than that on Friday and Saturday. The film is a big blow to Dharma Productions and UTV. “
Mehra adds, “People are not interested in seeing terrorism any longer. New York did fairly well but that’s because it wasn’t publicised as a film based on terrorism. It looked like a very youthful film with fun elements by John and Katrina. The entire publicity of Kurbaan was wrong. If the heroine of Kurbaan doesn’t want her mother to see her steamy scenes with her boyfriend, how can one go with family members to see such a film?”
Distributor Ramesh Sippy says cautiously, “I don’t want to make any assessment. But yes, Kurbaan has not lived up to its expectations.”
We also spoke to some of the theatre officials. Manoj Desai (of Maratha Mandir, Gaiety-Galaxy) says, “I registered 80 per cent collections on the first three days whereas it did not go beyond 40 per cent in other theatres. However, the collections have nosedived since yesterday. Koi picture dekhne ke liye tayyar hi nahin hai. The overall feeling is that it’s a very serious and cruel film.”
An official from Cinemax, Andheri, says, “We had expected that this film would rake in around 85-90 per cent collections. But from day one, we knew that it wouldn’t be a hit. First day, we registered only 40-45 per cent collections. People have not related to the film, it has no repeat value. On Saturday and Sunday, we recorded only 50 per cent ticket sales.”
Vikram Varma, Fun Republic, communications manager, says, “We recorded 35 per cent in the first three days. But today (Monday), we only have 15-20 per cent occupancy. I think that too many films were released in the past few weeks and this has adversely affected Kurbaan.”
We then spoke to the public to find out why they haven’t gone kurbaan over Kurbaan. 23-year old Eka Lakhani from Lokhandwala says, “I was dying to see Kurbaan as I had heard a lot about it. The film started very well, but soon I realised that there was neither any love story nor any terrorism track. Kareena and Saif got lost in the second half and I had to look for their scenes together. The terrorism part wasn’t explained well either.”
34-year-old Menka Chandiramani from Seven Bungalows says, “I was quite impressed by Kareena and Vivek’s acting but the film hasn’t stayed with me. It had nothing new to offer. Moreover, I wonder why there was so much brouhaha about Kareena and Saif’s sex scenes. We have seen much more than this in Hindi films.”
The director of Kurbaan, Rensil D’Silva, put up a brave front. He says that people are trying to bring down his film. “That happens with every new film. But you know, I am getting a lot of calls and text messages from people whom I don’t even know saying that they have enjoyed my film. I am basically a creative guy. The best people to talk about this will be the distributors of Kurbaan (UTV).” However, Siddharth Roy Kapoor, CEO of UTV remained unavailable for comment.
Karan’s first film with UTV, Wake Up Sid raked in average returns but failed to be a profit-making proposition. And the audience’s thanda response to Kurbaan has only made things worse for Dharma and UTV.