Television

Balaji Telefilms has movie plans, but steps cautiously

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MUMBAI: Balaji Telefilms will undertake all film production activities of the promoters, marking a change in strategy aimed at scaling up operations.

Earlier, the movie projects were channelised through Balaji Films, an unlisted company. Founder-promoter and noted actor Jeetendra Kapoor had earmarked 6-7 movie projects at an estimated cost of Rs 700-800 million. The promoters had decided to keep Balaji Telefilms out of the movie business as they wanted to cushion the listed company against the risks that get attached to these projects.

Balaji Telefilms will, however, take a cautious approach and is making a foray into the movie production business with two low-cost projects totaling Rs 100 million. The lineup of future production will be weighed against the successes of the first two projects and will be spread over a period of time.

"We plan to do the movies through Balaji Telefilms. That will mean that the focus of the promoters stay concentrated on one rather than two companies. But we will be very careful on our projects as most of the movies are not succeeding at the box office," says Balaji Telefilms president of strategy and business development R Karthik.

Balaji Telefilms will first release Kya Kool Hai Hum in April, followed soon by Koi Apsa.

Balaji Telefilms has committed the satellite TV rights for these two movies to Star, says Karthik. The terms of the deal including price are being worked out. "The rights could range from three to seven years depending upon the price," he adds.

The music rights for Kya Kool Hai Hum have been sold to T-Series. Negotiations are on to sell the rights for the second movie.

Balaji Telefilms has, meanwhile, signed up with Pritish Nandy Communications (PNC) to co-produce a movie. The project cost and other details, though, are yet to be finalised, says Karthik.

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