UTV in co-production deal with Bachchan's AB Corp

MUMBAI: Amitabh Bachchan is charting out a revival plan for AB Corp. De-risking the business model, his company and Ronnie Screwvala's UTV have entered into a co-production deal for films, television programmes and other ventures. This was announced by Bachchan, who is currently in Amsterdam for the IIFA Awards.

The two companies have signed an MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) and will be working jointly on various ventures in the entertainment sector.

Addressing a press briefing in Amsterdam, Bachchan opined that the Indian film industry had changed over the years and that in this ever evolving industry, it was important for companies to enter into co-production deals for survival.

"Budgets are going to go up and no single entity is going to have the capacity to produce a film by itself. Let's say you have a Rs 200 million film. If you co-produce it, you may run the risk of losing Rs 100 million but you get a product worth Rs 200 million," Bachchan was quoted as saying in a media report.

He was of the opinion that the Indian film industry was waiting to be taken over by American companies and in a scenario like this, Bollywood needed to be corporatised for this "invasion of sorts." He also admitted to the fact that probably he had been too "ambitious and arrogant" when he had started his own company ABCL. "But now we won't repeat the mistakes that we made earlier. We just want to hold hands and move together," he was quoted as saying.

Big B's AB Corp is on the path of revival. The company will be gearing up to release three films this year -- Viruddh , Family and Antarmahal. The company is also in the process of finalising its maiden overseas co-production deal with UK's Inspired Movies.

At the time of filing this report, UTV officials were not available for comment.

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