Amazon Prime Video India has signed a multi-year deal with New Zealand Cricket to exclusively stream in India all men’s and women’s cricket matches played in New Zealand across the one day international, twenty-20 and test formats. First up will be a test series between New Zealand and Bangladesh, beginning Jan. 1, 2022. Upcoming fixtures include the series between the Indian and New Zealand women’s cricket teams in Feb. 2022, as well as the Indian and New Zealand men’s series currently scheduled for Nov. 2022.
Cricket is India’s most watched sport and the highest consumed content. Rights for the lucrative Indian Premier League cricket tournament are up for auction in 2022. Amazon was a bidder in the last cycle but has not confirmed whether it will bid this time around.
Gaurav Gandhi, country head, Amazon Prime Video, India, said: “Cricket is undoubtedly the most loved sport in India and our collaboration with New Zealand Cricket underlines our commitment to give our customers what they want. The upcoming series will be Prime Video’s first foray into live cricket in India.”
Meanwhile, the keenly anticipated “Gehraiyaan,” starring Deepika Padukone (“xXx: Return of Xander Cage”), Siddhant Chaturvedi (“Gully Boy”), Ananya Panday (“Khaali Peeli”) and Dhairya Karwa (“Made in Heaven”), will premiere directly on Amazon Prime Video India on Jan. 25, 2022. The film is directed by Shakun Batra (“Kapoor & Sons) and jointly produced by Karan Johar‘s Dharma Productions and Viacom18 Studios in association with Batra’s Jouska Films. The film is a relationship drama that dives into the depths of complex modern relationships.
Johar said: “’Gehraiyaan’ is an intense, real, and honest observation of modern relationships, and Shakun has done a phenomenal job of portraying the complexities of human emotions. That, combined with the cast’s earnest and powerful performances, make the film a truly compelling story.”
Darren Aronofsky, the Oscar-nominated director of “Black Swan,” will chair the jury of Moscow’s Patriki Film Festival, which has switched to an online-only format. In a statement, Aronofsky urged international filmmakers to submit their films to compete for the festival’s Grand Prix. “Surprise us with your originality and personal visions,” he said.
The winner of the main competition section will be selected from a shortlist of seven films. Entries will be accepted starting Monday; films can be of any length but must have “a bright artistic expression and original look,” the festival said.
The festival, which will run during the summer, is led by producer Marina Jigalova, who was managing director of Walt Disney’s Russia arm for more than 13 years, and producer Alexey Bokov.
Bokov said: “The new online format we offer is an opportunity for filmmakers to show the entire world their work, a wonderful chance to be seen and heard from anywhere in the world. In this sense, our choice of Darren Aronofsky as jury chairman is very consistent with the concept of the festival, which opens up wide opportunities for creative expression. Aronofsky is in touch with the zeitgeist of today and certainly has a strong name, thanks to which the contestants have the chance to receive a direct ticket to Hollywood.”
The festival’s backers include streaming platform Start and Independent Media, which publishes international brands such as Cosmopolitan, Harper’s Bazaar, Grazia, Esquire and Men’s Health in Russia. – Leo Barraclough
WarnerMedia has appointed Tore Fredrik Dreyer as head of theatrical distribution for the Nordic region, reporting into both Jamie Friend, country manager Nordic and Central and Eastern Europe and CFO EMEA and Toby Tennant, senior VP theatrical distribution EMEA, Warner Bros.
Dreyer joins WarnerMedia from technology company Dolittle where he held the role of chief storyteller. He will be responsible for building a new pan-Nordic theatrical team which will optimise the Warner Bros. slate for cinema release from July 2022 onwards. The first title Dreyer will be responsible for is “Black Adam,” starring Dwayne Johnson and scheduled for release in the Nordics on July 29, 2022.
Series “World War Two in Color: The Road to Victory,” a co-production between U.K. production house World Media Rights (WMR) and Germany’s ZDF Enterprises, will stream on Netflix from dec. 22.
A 10-part sequel to WMR’s “Greatest Events of World War Two in Colour,” the follows the progress of the allies from early comebacks and victories in WWII to the surrender of Germany and Japan. It uses previously unseen footage of Dunkirk, the liberation of Paris, Iwo Jima, the battle for Berlin and the U.S. invasion of Okinawa to show how the allies refined their combat methods and their technology to finally win the war. It applies WMR’s special colorisation techniques to black and white WWII footage.