A big announcement was made today by the Anil Ambani owned Reliance Entertainment. It said that its Film Production and Distribution business in India will partner with Phantom Films- the brainchild of four leading young creative minds- Anurag Kashyap, Vikas Bahl, Vikramaditya Motwane and Madhu Mantena – in a 50-50 Joint Venture.
The proposed venture with the proven creative and production capabilities of the Phantom team, while enjoying access to the established domestic and international sales and distribution infrastructure of Reliance Entertainment including inter alia the wide reach of IM Global, a Reliance Entertainment company based in Los Angeles, with operations in North America, UK and Europe, Asia – Pacific, China, Latin America, etc looks like a perfect combination.
This year Phantom Films has an impressive slate of six releases which includes “Bombay Velvet” starring Ranbir Kapoor, “NH 10” with Anushka Sharma, “Shandar” with Shahid Kapoor and Alia Bhatt, “Udta Punjab” with Shahid Kapoor, Kareena Kapoor and Alia Bhatt, “Hunterr” and “Ghoomketu”.
Along with distribution of films in India and overseas, and syndication of rights from the over 175 films strong library this new venture also plans to develop and produce at least 5 to 6 films every year.
50% shareholding of the combined business will be owned by Reliance while the remaining 50% will be equally held among the four promoters of Phantom Films. However Phantom Films will manage its day-to-day operations.
Amitabh Jhunjhunwala, Group Managing Director, Reliance Group, said, “We are delighted to partner with such creative and talented individuals as Anurag, Madhu, Vikas and Vikramaditya, who have an enviable track record of creating great cinema. This partnership is in line with our evolving strategy in the media and entertainment business, of aligning with like-minded people who are trailblazers in their own field, and playing the role of supportive investors on our part.”
Madhu Mantena said “It’s great to be appreciated by India’s leading entertainment company, and being given such a huge responsibility. We are overwhelmed with this partnership, and hope to do justice to it.”
Vikas Bahl added, “This not only gives us partnership with people we look up to and want to learn from, it opens up our world of learning and access to people and infrastructure which was way beyond our imagination. We are confident we will make even better films thanks to this merger.”
Anurag Kashyap said "This deal opens up our windows to international opportunities and talent. We hope to optimise on this opportunity and take Indian cinema international, and also attract excellent talent into the country."
Vikramaditya Motwane commented, "This partnership and the avenues it opens up to us give us the opportunity to take our movies to the next level in domestic as well as international cinema. We couldn't be more excited with this partnership."
Looks like some exciting stuff is on its way.