Zee pays Rs 40+ cr for Chennai Express for its upcoming channel ‘& Pictures’

01 Aug,2013

By Nandini Raghavendra


Zee Entertainment has secured the satellite rights of soon-to-be-released Shah Rukh Khan-starrer Chennai Express for a new movie channel it is launching next month under the bouquet ‘&’. The movie, which also stars Deepika Padukone, will be aired on ‘& Pictures’, the first channel to be launched in the new bouquet.


“The price is Rs 40 crore plus for seven years, with a link to box-office performance of the film but it is a win-win situation for both the channel and the producer,” said Jayantilal Gada, who does all the buying of film rights for the Zee group.


While the Zee network already runs four Hindi film channels – Zee Cinema, Zee Premier, Zee Action and Zee Classic – and holds the rights to over 4,000 Hindi films, ‘& Pictures’ will primarily run on a premiere model with big new release titles, according to people close to the development.


‘&Pictures’ launch will be a precursor to the Rs 4,000-crore media conglomerate’s plans to add multi-genres to the network through different bouquets. For now, the Subhash Chandra-owned Zee has a huge bouquet with channels across genres as well as regional plus a sports bouquet under the Ten brand name.


Zee’s new strategy follows Star Network, which launched its second general entertainment channel (GEC) ‘Life OK’ around two years ago, followed by ‘Movies OK’. It is said to be looking to extend the brand to other genres. Viacom, which runs the GEC Colors, is also looking to launch a second GEC, which it currently runs in the UK under the name ‘Rishtey’.


The satellite rights of Chennai Express had seen a lot of buzz with industry sources saying deals had fallen through with other networks on price issues.


The deal links the film’s satellite price to the box office collections. If Chennai Express crosses the cut-off amount, which is said to be around Rs 130 crore, then for every Rs 10 crore net collection after that, the producers get an additional Rs 2 crore. The producers of the film – Shah Rukh Khan and Siddharth Roy Kapur of UTV Motion Pictures – declined to comment.


Satellite rights form a crucial component of a film’s revenue, contributing 30-35% of its total recovery. For broadcasters, movies generate critical gross rating points (GRPs). With almost all broadcasters vying to acquire rights of the top stars, price wars are not unheard of in the industry, with rights of films still on the production floors being signed up. Almost all films starring top stars such as Shah Rukh Khan, Aamir Khan and Salman Khan have fetched satellite rights between Rs 40 and 45 crore.


Source:The Economic Times

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