You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

China and India Start Dialogue on Film

'Dhoom 3' to get China Film Group release July 25

HONG KONG – China and India, two of the world’s biggest movie-producing countries, have begun tentative talks on film industry co-operation.

This week a Chinese delegation led by Jiang Jianguo, vice minister at the State Administration for Press, Publicity, Radio, Film & TV (SAPPRFT), met India’s new secretary for Information and Broadcasting Bimal Julka in New Delhi, ahead of a series of meetings with Indian film industry leaders in Mumbai.

The two giant neighbors have significant amounts of trade in goods and services, but in the entertainment and media sectors interaction is close to zero.

The occasional border skirmishes and the always delicate diplomatic relations between Indian and Chinese governments may have meant that cultural connections have not been able to flourish. But with China seen as the world’s next superpower and India now operating under a new government, albeit a Hindu nationalist one, change is in the air.

The Indian ministry was quick to announce China as the “focus country” at the next edition of the government-backed Intl. Film Festival of India (IFFI) held in November in Goa.

There was also talk of student exchanges, co-operation in new media and the setting up of a joint working group on the film sector.

India sees China as potentially significant export market for film as it once was in previous decades. The Chinese market these days is largely off-limits to Indian films due to a combination of official import restrictions and the quota slots for revenue sharing films that are largely taken by Hollywood blockbusters.

The I&B ministry is understood to have asked Jiang to review its import controls and limitations to distribution within China. “The I&B touched upon issues related to the restriction of Indian films in the Chinese market and asked them to look into the matter sympathetically,” it said in a statement.

Others indicated that India would be pleased if its films gained two or three of the 34 revenue sharing releases governed by China’s current quota system.

Many Indian producers believe that if a free market for film were to exist in China their titles would do well. Many Indian movies are high-concept crowdpleasers or family entertainment with little in the way of sex or graphic violence to trouble China’s censors.

Such optimism has been fueled by the small but significant successes enjoyed in the past couple of years by Indian film in other parts of East Asia, and, more dubiously, by the levels of piracy of Indian movies in China.

One leading Bollywood company, Yash Raj Films, is not waiting for quota slots to open.

Next month YRF’s big-budget Aamir Khan starring action vehicle “Dhoom 3” (pictured), which was released in India in December, will get a theatrical release in China. Yash Raj, which was also behind “Grace of Monaco” and “Titli,” the two Indian-financed films in Cannes, reports that it has been told the picture will receive a 2,000-screen release on July 25. The distributor is state-owned China Film Group, which also handles all the major Hollywood releases in China, but the “Dhoom” deal is a flat fee sale (which YRF describes as a minimum guarantee deal) rather than a revenue-sharing quota release.

Indian officials say they are also pushing for two other films to get speedy releases in China: Vikas Bahl’s Viacom18-backed “Queen,” a surprise hit romantic drama about a jilted bride who goes on what would have been her honeymoon alone; and Rakeysh Omprakesh Mehra’s Reliance Big Pictures-backed “Bhaag Milkha Bhaag,”a biopic about Olympian Milkha Singh, who confronts the political demons that caused him to take up running in the first place.

Queen” gets a mainstream theatrical release today in Hong Kong. That is the film’s second release in the Chinese semi-autonomous territory. “Queen” was released earlier to the Indian expat community in Hong Kong simultaneous with its Indian outing in early April.

More Biz

  • Discovery CEO David Zaslav Sees 2018

    Discovery CEO David Zaslav Sees 2018 Compensation Soar to $129.4 Million

    Discovery Inc. president-CEO David Zaslav is once again making headlines for an enormous compensation package. Zaslav’s 2018 compensation soared to $129.44 million in 2018, fueled by stock options and grants awarded as the longtime Discovery chief signed a new employment contract last July that takes him through 2023 at the cable programming group. Zaslav received [...]

  • Jonathan Lamy RIAA

    Jonathan Lamy Stepping Down From RIAA

    Jonathan Lamy, the Recording Industry Association of America’s longtime executive VP of communications and marketing, is stepping down from his post after 17 years, he announced today. As he put it in an email to Variety, “I started back in 2002, which means it’s been 17+ years, four different RIAA CEOs, three format changes and [...]

  • Fox Layoffs

    Disney-21st Fox Layoffs: TV Divisions Brace for Deep Cuts

    A second day of layoffs has begun on the Fox lot in the wake of Disney completing its acquisition of 21st Century Fox on Wednesday. Longtime 20th Century Fox Television Distribution president Mark Kaner is among the senior executives who were formally notified with severance details on Friday morning. 21st Century Fox’s international TV sales [...]

  • anthony pellicano

    Hollywood Fixer Anthony Pellicano Released From Federal Prison

    Anthony Pellicano, the Hollywood private eye whose wiretapping case riveted the industry a decade ago, was released from a federal prison on Friday, a prison spokeswoman confirmed. Pellicano was sentenced in 2008 to 15 years, following his conviction on 78 charges of wiretapping, racketeering, conspiracy and wire fraud. He had been in custody since 2003, [...]

  • This image taken from the Twitter

    HBO’s Reaction to Trump’s ‘Game of Thrones’ Campaign

    Everyone wants a piece of the “Game of Thrones” lemon cake. From Bud Light to Red Bull the world of Westeros is open to a lot of brand partnerships, unless you’re using that iconic typeface to push a political agenda. In November of 2018 President Donald Trump unveiled a “Thrones” inspired poster with the words [...]

  • Leaving Neverland HBO

    'Leaving Neverland' Lawsuit Proves to Be a Judicial Hot Potato

    The Michael Jackson estate sued HBO last month for airing the documentary “Leaving Neverland,” which accuses the late King of Pop of serial child sexual abuse. Since then, the case has had a difficult time finding a judge to handle it. Three federal judges have recused themselves in the last week, citing potential financial conflicts [...]

  • Members of the public mourn at

    Guy Oseary’s New Zealand Fundraiser Nears $150,000, Continues Raising Money

    In the wake of the horrific shootings at New Zealand mosques last week that killed some 49 people, Maverick chief Guy Oseary launched a GoFundMe campaign to “support those affected by this tragedy at this very difficult time,” and began it with an $18,000 donation. Boosted by donations from many celebrities — including Amy Schumer, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content