World Briefs

INDIA

Film director Deepa Mehta has filed a case in a New Delhi High Court, seeking damages for defamation and a declaration upholding her right to make the film “Water” in India. The film faced mobs recently in Varanasi and shooting was halted.

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Nimbus Communications is in discussion with E Entertainment about a joint-venture channel in India. Nimbus is planning to start Showbiz TV, a satellite channel on about entertainment in India, and another channel focused on Indian women.

It plans to launch the showbiz channel by July and the women’s channel in the last quarter of the year at an estimated cost of $11 million each.

Nimbus Communications is also set to become the first company to provide free Internet access in India within the next few months.

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Hollywood’s Digital Domain and India’s PentaMedia Graphics are forming a strategic partnership to create special effects content for the Internet. The deal was signed March 10.

Satcaster Zee TV has launched two English-language channels: Zee English and Zee Movies. The digital channels have acquired programming from several Western sources including Pearson, Carlton, Fremantle and Discovery.

SPAIN

Moviegoers in Madrid can now enjoy a new, state-of-the art theater. Yelmo Cineplex de Espana — a joint venture between Loews Cineplex Intl. and Spain’s Yelmo Films — has opened a 2,331-seat, 10-screen multiplex in the southern district of the city.

CZECH REPUBLIC

Local conglom Bonton has signed an agreement with Universal and DreamWorks to handle video rights. The agreement goes into effect in May. While theatrical ticket sales have remained flat, video has provided a growth area for local distributors. Bonton forecasts as much as 35% growth in its video market this year.

BRAZIL

Latin America’s leading live-entertainment company CIE has upped its stake in Brazilian venue operator Stage Empreendimientos from 30% to 70%.

Stage owns and operates the Palace and Credicard Hall in Sao Paolo, and has now obtained the rights to operate the city’s Teatro Opera.

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