Bollywood has always been looking for generation of profit and along with box-office collections. Along with box-office collections, producers are increasingly looking at off-screen deals as an alternative source of revenue. Bollywood film group Eros International Plc, which owns and distributes Indian films globally, raises about 22.5 million pounds ($41.48 million) on London’s Alternate Investment Market. Today, all major productions houses and producer are looking at alternative source of revenue other than selling distribution rights. These can be in the way of merchandising and getting brands to sign up in the marketing of the film.
Bollywood movies have had niche audiences in countries other then India for example Russia, Egypt for a long time. This is gradually becoming more mainstream. One of the first to start this trend was the Barjatyas with their hindi movie “Hum Apke Hain Kaun” in 1994 when Archies was used for merchandising the film by the production house. Over the years this has become very popular and two of the most recent examples of merchandising and making more profits from alternative revenues would be Bhansali’s Saawariya and Farak Khan’s Om Shanti Om. Both these films battled out not only at the box office but they also tried to tip each other at off-screen marketing.
Saawariya signed a deal with the Future Group, worth Rs 10 crore, for merchandising products like apparel, bed and bath linen, and beauty products, the Om Shanti Om team tied up with Shoppers Stop for Rs 6-7 crore and also with brands like Sia Jewellery and Nokia. Today, alternative sources of income judge whether the film is a hit among the masses and whether the products used to merchandise are being sold or not. This has also made Hindi movies a hit in the Western countries especially among the NRI’s staying there.
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