Dar Media to distribute The Dark Knight Rises

Written by Priyanko Sarkar | Updated: Jul 21 2012, 00:41am hrs
The Dark Knight RisesThe Dark Knight Rises
Can you give us a backgrounder to the distribution deal between Dar and Warner Bros regarding The Dark Knight Rises (TDKR)

Dar Media Pvt. Ltd. has acquired TDKR from Warner Bros Pictures India Ltd for an all India theatrical release in four languages (English, Hindi, Tamil & Telugu). The deal was negotiated over a period of three months and a lot of number crunching and brain storming went into it from our side to arrive at a correct price. Its the highest price ever given to a studio for acquiring a Hollywood film for India rights and the first-ever deal for all India theatrical rights in the history of Warner Bros India.

What are the marketing and promotional activities you are planning

A series of interesting promotional activities are planned for TDKR India release, one of which was the breaking of the campaign with the launch of the Cadbury Bournville-TDKR TV spot during the Euro Cup 2012 finals. You will see many more such promotional activities in the coming days leading up to the release of the film. A highly anticipated film like The Dark Knight Rises will obviously attract a lot of brands but Warner Bros India has partnered with an interesting mix of Indian and international brands that not only fit the theme of the film but also help it attain the scale it deserves. Brands like Cadbury Bournville, Nokia Lumia 800, Garnier Men and Citizen watches are the brands associated with TDKR.

TDKR is already touted as the biggest film of 2012. Does that make your job easier or difficult in terms of getting the right message across to audiences

It makes our job easy in some ways and difficult in some ways. It is easy because there is a curiosity value and excitement among the audience as it is a Christopher Nolan film and the last installment in the trilogy (the other two being Batman Begins and The Dark Knight). All the exhibitors and distributors know about the film and want to run the film in their respective theatres. Our job gets difficult because the expectations are very high post the last two films of the trilogy doing very well and especially because Inception, Nolans last film, was appreciated and created a lot of buzz the world over.

What are the number of screens, languages and places you are looking to target

We are planning to release this film in four languages all over India on 1000 plus screens as per the initial release plan. The screen count may further increase closer to the release date.

Do you feel you have enough time to work post the deal

Yes, we have got enough time to work on the release of the film as we have not done a last minute deal! As I said before we have been working on this deal for a very long time and so a lot of prep work had already started some time ago.

In terms of overall perspective, how big is the acquisition of TDKR How much value will it add to DAR and how will you look to leverage this

Its the biggest acquisition for Dar till date. TDKR brings along with it a very high brand value which will only add tremendously to DARs brand in not one but many aspects. We are very positive that the film will not only create a great brand value for us but also reap us good rewards in the form of a good return on investment (ROI). We have decided to retain and self distribute three of the biggest circuits in India (Mumbai, Delhi-UP and East Punjab) along with Nizam territory. In this way we are exploiting almost 75 per cent of India on our own.

Can you confirm if the deal has been signed for Rs 16 crore

We can only divulge that its the biggest ever acquisition in the history of Hollywood film distribution in India. We are under contractual obligation not to give out the deal price.