Film afficionados to get a peep through French window

Written by Shaheen Mansuri | Mumbai, Jan 23 | Updated: Jan 24 2008, 07:27am hrs
French films will soon make their way to a multiplex near you. For the purpose, the film and television office in the French embassy is felicitating talks between the French film makers and Indian exhibitors for the commercial release of French films in India.

Mohammed Bendjebbour, French Embassys head of film and television office told FE, We are trying to create a new taste amongst Indian audiences. We want viewers to capture the French cinematic experience. We are already in talks with multiplex owners to release our films in theatres across India.

Talking about the revenue sharing once the films are released in India, Bendjebbour says, Before the release of the film, the exhibitor will have to pay a minimum guarantee fee ranging from Euro 30,000- 160,000 to the film producer depending on the budget and popularity of the film. Later, the revenue will be shared by both the parties. The films are likely to be released in March this year.

Films like Asterix at the Olympic Games (Asterix Aux Jeux Olympiques), Azur & Asmar (Azur et Asmar), The Science of Sleep (La science des reves) etc will make their way for a commercial release at multiplexes across the country.

However, Navin Shah, CEO, Integrated P9 says that there is definitely a market for sampling these films in India. French films can be showcased but it is a long journey for the French film-makers to distribute their films on a broader scale in India. Giving an example of how Indian film makers have been trying to create a market for Hindi films in Germany for the past 12 years, Shah adds, When the film Asoka-The Great from Shahrukh Khans home production was released in the late 1990s, Shahrukh Khan went to Germany to popularize his film. Red Chillies Entertainment has now been able to sell over 12 prints in Germany for Om Shanti Om."