Indian, U.K. companies buy for $20 million

Bollywood producer-distrib UTV Motion Pictures has sold TV rights to a slew of its 2008-09 films for rupees 950 million ($20.53 million) to Indian feevees Colors and NDTV Imagine, Blighty’s Channel 4 and B4U, which airs in the U.K. and the U.S.

The agreement includes recent releases such as “Kurbaan,” “Wake up Sid” and “Kaminey” as well as last year’s “Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye!” and “Dev D.”

Siddharth Roy Kapur, CEO of UTV Motion Pictures, said, “These television syndication deals are non-exclusive and hence allow us to exploit the same content across multiple additional broadcasters in India and worldwide.”

With a set number of runs on each network, Colors gets the first window and NDTV Imagine the next in India. The pact takes effect immediately. Even though the Indian rights are not exclusive, domestic nets expect to harvest rich ratings from those who missed the initial run.

Indian media pegged the deal as one of the biggest for Hindi cinema this year, as the value of local TV rights has fallen about 60% in the past 12 months. Before that Bollywood could depend on TV rights as a reliable revenue stream, especially for box office stars such as Shah Rukh Khan.

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