Hollywood studios fail to bloom in Bolly-land

MUMBAI: Bollywood is the new global destination and the money-stuffed, well equipped Hollywood studios know it well.

It’s been a while that a variety of Hollywood studios stepped into this fairytale escapade to try their luck in making their presence felt through their high-end expertise and monies. They ventured into quite a few movie co-productions and distributions in complete “Bollywood ishtyle” but failed to leave their mark.

In the last three years, studions such as Columbia Tristar (Sony Pictures), Warner Brothers, Disney Pictures and Fox fed audiences with films like Saawariya, Raaz – The Mystery Continues, Chandni Chowk To China, Saas Bahu Aur Sensex, Atithi Tum Kab Jaoge, Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hai, Lahore, Roadside Romeo, Quick Gun Murugan and My Name Is Khan. But barring Fox Star Studios, others either featured a scarred incidence on the box-office scorecard or absolutely burnt their fingers.

Columbia Tristar (Sony) was the first multinational studio to enter the Indian filmmaking and distribution business with Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Saawariya. Released in November 2007, the movie earned Rs 230 million, much lower than what was invested into its making.

2008 marked the entry of yet another big studio on the Indian shores. Yash Raj Films, the biggest production house of the land, joined hands with Walt Disney Pictures for the animated Roadside Romeo. The film was released in October that year and in spite of the initial excitement, the product could muster only Rs 52.5 million.

A year later, it was Warner Bros’ turn to make a disastrous entry into Bollywood. It teamed up with Ramesh Sippy to make Chandni Chowk To China, the first biggest flop of the year. The film failed miserably and managed to gross only Rs 300 million. The studio also co-produced Saas Bahu Aur Sensex with PLA Entertainment but the film too nosedived and earned a meagre Rs 10 million.

This year, to begin with, Warner headed for mid-budget movies like Atithi Tum Kab Jaoge in March and Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hai in April.

It co-produced the former with Wide Frame Films that gained appreciation amongst viewers to pocket Rs 290 million. Meanwhile, Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hai performed averagely to earn Rs 45 million. The studio also distributed Vivek Khatkar’s Lahore that made just Rs 10 million.

So, have the studios really failed to make it big in Bollywood? Says a film critic, “It is too early to pass any comment on the same. Barring Warner Bros. and Fox Star, no other studio has actually done substantial work to show their seriousness in film production by which one can judge their activities.”

Disney, however, has a majority stake in UTV Software Communications and movie-making stays as a main activity. Its individual Bollywood projects with other entities, however, have failed to make a significant mark.

Fox Star Studios’ experience on the Indian land differs from the rest players. The joint venture company between Twentieth Century Fox and the Asian media company Star was set up to distribute in India 15-18 movies from the international production house within one year. And, the studio met with its its first grand success with Slumdog Millionaire. It also distributed the critically-acclaimed Quick Gun Murugan last year and then went on to distribute the Karan Johar directed My Name Is Khan that made a whopping Rs 735 million.

“No studio besides Fox has been that aggressive. The problem is that most studios don’t have people with the right vision. You cannot have a person perfecting in some other stream head your production department. I think the problem lies there,” says trade analyst Amod Mehra.

Sony burnt its fingers with the failure of Saawariya; and Warner Bros. India released five films but saw only average results.

Says Fox Star Studios CEO Vijay Singh, “After the success of MNIK, we have successfully managed to develop a strong distribution and marketing network in India and have also effectively leveraged our international network to take a film into newer markets and promote it. Our main focus now is to enter into co-production deals and work closely with our partners in the production and marketing of our films.”

But what was the cause of such mediocre performance of the other international players? Observes trade analyst Taran Adarsh, “It is simple, the content of the films were not accepted by the audiences as it wasn‘t good.”

With this mediocre result in place, Hollywood biggies need to have a relook into their filmmaking strategy and make films with good and attractive content. Only then can they attain the success that has been their benchmark in Hollywood.

Latest Reads
Oddball Motion Pictures gets Rs 250 cr for film production

MUMBAI: Oddball Motion Pictures, founded by filmmaker Nitin Upadhyaya, announced its association with Chanda Group where the latter will be funding a seed capital of up to Rs 250 crore for the feature films and original digital video content that will be exclusively developed and produced by...

Movies Movies On Mutiple Platforms
Cast & crew of 21 sarfarosh: saragarhi 1897 celebrate army day with the 7th Battalion of sikh regiment of the indian army

The cast & crew of 21 Sarfarosh: Saragarhi 1897 commemorated the Army day with the Soldiers of Sikh regiment of Indian army. Actors Mohit Raina & Mukul Dev personally took the soldiers of the Sikh regiment on the tour of the set in Aamgaon where the epic battle of Saragarhi is currently...

Movies Hindi
Watch the world television premier of "Nirahua Hindustani"on 30th december at 1 PM only on Dabangg

SABGROUP’S foremost regional channel – Dabangg is geared for the World Television Premier of the highest revenue grossing Bhojpuri Blockbuster of all times, ‘Nirahua Hindustani’. The telecast will air on the 30th December,2017 at 1pm, followed by the repeat at 8pm.

Movies Hindi
BookMyShow reveals how India entertained itself in 2017

As the year comes to a close, BookMyShow looks back at what entertained India this year, from movies to plays, sports, events and music. In 2017, millions of Indians reached out to BookMyShow to meet their entertainment demands basis which the platform is delighted to present #Bestof2017*.

Movies Hindi
Catch Bollywood Actor Irrfan Khan this Week on Off Centre

MUMBAI: This week on Off Centre, Anuradha Sengupta talks to one of the finest Bollywood actors in the industry, Irrfan Khan. From being noticed and welcomed as a romantic lead after 22 years in business to his latest release and love, sex, romance in today’s time, he expresses his views and...

Movies Hindi
Zee Studios International's Secret Superstar hits it big in Taiwan

Zee Studios International has collected $700,681 from its release of Aamir Khan-starrer Secret Superstar in Taiwan, making the movie the widest Bollywood film in the country. The film, which also features Zaira Wasim, lit up the box office in India. The distribution company began the next phase of...

Movies Hindi
Zee Studio to premiere the post-apocalyptic horror drama - MAGGIE!

Zee Studio, the hollywood movie destination, brings the Indian television premiere of Maggie. Starring multi-award winner Arnold Schwarzenegger and Academy Award-nominee, Abigail Breslin, this post-apocalyptic drama premieres on 10 December 2017, Sunday at 12 noon and 9 pm.

Movies Hollywood
Demonetisation, decline in govt ads impact UFO Q2 numbers

BENGALURU: Indian digital cinema distribution network and in-cinema advertising platform UFO Moviez Ltd (UFO) reported a 12.8 percent year-on-year (y-o-y) decline in consolidated operating revenue for the quarter ended 30 September 2017 (Q2 FY 2017-18) as compared with the corresponding year ago...

Movies Movies On Mutiple Platforms
The modern day economics of film financing

Only 2 per cent of the total movies released in 2016 in the US were computer graphic (CG) animation, yet they grossed more than 21 per cent of the US box office collection. Strong animation brands have longer shelf-life and generate revenue for years.

Movies International

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories