Disney, UTV to co-produce family films in India

MUMBAI: The Walt Disney Company in India and UTV Motion Pictures have entered into a creative alliance to co-produce a slate of Disney branded films aimed at family audiences.

UTV will manage the production, marketing and distribution of these films. The creative responsibilities will be shared by UTV and Disney.

“Together with UTV, our goal is to produce films that have a direct connection with the dynamic and expanding India audience and that embody Disney brand values - optimistic, fun, meaningful and emotional entertainment for the entire family’” said The Walt Disney Company India managing director Mahesh Samat. “From television to publishing to online gaming and studios, we are singly focused on developing stories, characters and experiences that reach into the heart of the community.” 

UTV CEO Ronnie Screwvala said, “I believe this is a strategic initiative that further strengthens our relationship with Disney. It is a wonderful affirmation for UTV that a much loved global entertainment brand like Disney has the confidence in our creative and commercial capabilities and we welcome this co-production alliance. The combined offering of UTV and Disney content will offer Indian viewers a tremendously diverse range of movies across languages and genres.”

Disney’s creative partnership with UTV further establishes its position in the Indian market where local production is key and also complements its fast-growing Disney-branded businesses. In 2006, the company acquired Hungama TV, India’s leading Indian children’s television channel, and took an equity interest in media company UTV Software Communications Limited which it later increased in 2008 allowing both companies to maximise each other’s expertise and reach globally, and in India.

“Our relationship with UTV has yielded creative excellence for our audiences. To broaden our relationship into movie production is a natural extension that we are very excited about. Today’s announcement combines UTV‘s unparalleled commercial and artistic success with the best traditions of Disney storytelling and global franchise creation,” added Samat.

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