Friday, May 29, 2009

Bollywood losses pegged at Rs 350 crore (75 MILLION $)

As we go to press, news comes in from an official source in the United Producers and Distributors Forum that Amit Khanna, who has been mediating
Shah Rukh Khan, Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Mahesh Bhat in a discussion with the multiplex owners
between the producers and the multiplex lobby will host the final round of talks between the warring parties.

Mahesh Bhatt says, “The champagne will only be uncorked once the paperwork is done.’’ Aamir Khan and Shah Rukh Khan were involved in the final stage of talks, along with Yash Chopra, Ronnie Screwvala, Mukesh Bhatt and Vidhu Vinod Chopra.

Trade analyst Amod Mehra says, “The first quarter of 2009 was disastrous for the film industry. Both film corporations and mutliplexes lost money on movies like Chandni Chowk To China, Victory, Billu and Tasveer 8X10.’’ Dev D is the only one that sailed through with a decent profit margin.

Describing the second quarter of the year 2009 (April to June) as an even bleaker period for the entertainment companies, a trade source says, “This is the darkest period in Bollywood history, thanks to the multiplex-producer stand-off.’’ With revenues hitting an all-time low, it’s almost like writing off the quarter. For producers whose films are on hold, it’s money deferred, but it is a disastrous quarter for multiplex players as well.

“The stand-off will show in every company’s quarterly result. But at the same time, we need to take into account that this is a major crisis. Everyone kept ignoring it, but at some point it needed to be addressed,’’ says Priti Shahni, from one of the leading film corporations.

Though markets have jumped considerably, the share prices of multiplex companies have underperformed mainly due to the stand-off.
Even assuming the strike is called off on May 29, the collective losses between multiplexes, producers and allied businesses is being pegged at Rs 350 crore by industry estimates, with each day of strike costing around Rs 5-7 crore.

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Shilpa Shetty 'shines' on Vogue cover this month


If you were to guess the name of the cover girl of the latest edition of Vogue, the above line would definitely make sense. Not just for the reason that it's from her debut film but also because it suits her more than to anyone else this season. With her IPL team Rajasthan Royals' not making it to the finals, Shilpa Shetty did face a defeat recently. But, not the one to sob, Shilpa is raring to go and how! She can be seen sizzling while looking her curvaceous best on the cover of the recent edition of Vogue.

If the title 'The Business of being Shilpa Shetty' is anything to go by, then, it's totally needless to say that the story angle is surely tilting to more of Shilpa - the businesswoman as compared to Shilpa - the actress. Validating this is none other than her 'Prince Charming' Raj Kundra, who says "I saw the international appeal Shilpa had and suggested she make a brand of herself. She's taken to business like a fish to water. I call her India's Martha Stewart".

While talking about the change in her life, Shilpa says, "I like the idea of reinventing myself, of moulding and enhancing one's personality...I am not someone you would call a conventional beauty". To read more about Shilpa - the businesswoman, pick up the latest copy of Vogue.

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