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Shemaroo buys rights to titles of World Cinema masters
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Mumbai-based Shemaroo Entertainment
has acquired rights to a 100-odd titles of World Cinema masters. While this is a niche category for
Shemaroo, the company is exploring newer audiences and taking existing audiences of Bollywood and Hollywood to more mature movie
viewing.

“The 100-odd titles we have acquired cover around 30-40 world masters. Of these, we’ve launched about 40 titles. Since this is a niche genre, the market does not have the capacity to absorb everything at one go. The challenge is to position these films in the market. We are tapping the segment and obviously the main objective is to grow the market progressively,” Shemaroo Entertainment director Hiren Gada told ET.

“We are adopting various ways of marketing these films. Other than promoting them through a range of retail chains and standalone stores, we have entered into screening tie-ups with institutions like the Alliance Francaise and pubs in Mumbai like Bootlegger.

Traditionally, according to him, the larger mass of Indian audiences are generally tuned to Bollywood and Hollywood movies. The effort now is to lift audiences is up to more mature levels of movie watching. World Cinema, from the point of view of film-making is very different. “The endeavour is to expose viewers to categories of very mature cinema,” said Mr Gada.

“We are adopting various ways of marketing these films. Other than promoting them through a range of retail chains and standalone stores, we have entered into screening tie-ups with institutions like the Alliance Francaise and pubs in Mumbai like Bootlegger.

Shemaroo is also organising World Cinema festivals like the one around Akira Kurosawa. We are planning more such fests which could revolve around French, Spanish and Argentinian cinema. One could also witness theme fests which would draw on movies which have won Oscars and awards at film festivals like Cannes and other top fests,” Mr Gada informed.

One of the prime approaches to selecting World Cinema titles, he said, is to tour the international festival circuit. The process, in fact, begins from this stage when the initial interactions with the distributors and producers of the films kicks off. In turn, the exercise is carried forward through emails and telephonically. Shemaroo targets acquiring 75-100 World Cinema titles yearly.

The world masters Shemaroo has recently launched include Pedro Almodovar, Claude Chabrol, Calude Berri, Francois Truffaut, Roman Polanski, Akira Kurosawa, Alejandro Amenabar, Takashi Miike and Jean-Luc Godard. The videos are in DVD format with English and Hindi sub-titles.

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