MUMBAI: Sony Pictures is set to release a record 600 prints of the latest Bond film, Quantum of Solace, including dubbed versions in Tamil, Telugu
and Hindi—the largest number of prints of a Hollywood film in the Indian market so far.
The record was held until now by Spiderman-3 (2007) that came out with 597 prints, followed by Casino Royale (2006) with 427 prints.
An industry source says that foreign studios are gradually increasing the volume of prints of mainstream Hollywood titles in India because the market, especially for action and thrillers, has grown. There are also more screens to feed—in the last three years, the number of multiplexes in India has gone from 350 to 545. Television channels too, both national and regional, have been reporting extensively on foreign cinema thus creating awareness and audiences for it.
Devang Sampat, vice president of the Cinemax group says, "There is a loyal audience for Hollywood and world cinema across the country. Of course, as far as box-office numbers go, English films haven't generated as much curiosity as Bollywood has.'' And that's the point. Despite positive media coverage and the large number of prints being released, Hollywood still accounts for a slender five per cent of the cinema pie in India. Despite Hollywood's keenness to integrate with Indian culture and its valiant attempt to dub in every regional language, the domestic taste still prefers the local flavour.
Vikramjit Roy, head of media and promotions for Mumbai Mantra, says, "Don't forget, India and the US are the only two markets where the domestic fare has a substantially larger market share than international fare.'' Roy, however feels it is interesting to watch this space because of the steady flow of 70 to 75 films every year. He says, "This indicates that mainstream Hollywood has become a staple diet for the trade and for the audience. It is not an exception to the rule. Also, the fact that there are TV channels focusing solely on world cinema is a clear indication that this category has potential. I think the next swing will be world cinema, be it Chinese or Italian.''
"Bollywood definitely has maximum takers,'' says trade guru Amod Mehra.
"Major contributions also come in from Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, Bengali, Marathi and other cinema. However, there is a definite interest in Hollywood, an interest that is growing each day.''
6 months ago