Los Angeles, India Form Film Council

11:31 AM PST 11/10/2010 by THR staff

UPDATED

After a long courtship, Hollywood and Bollywood finally made it official.

The U.S. and Indian film industries came together on Wednesday at Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood to sign a pact that encourages co-productions and commercial cooperation between the two filmmaking giants.

As part of the declaration, the city of Los Angeles and the Indian film industry, represented by the Film and Television Producers Guild of India and the Film Federation of India, agree to develop and strengthen motion picture production, distribution, technology, content protection and commercial cooperation.

The two parties also support the creation of the Los Angeles-India Film Council to increase Indian film production in Los Angeles.

“Our vibrant film communities share many of the same goals and concerns,” said Bob Pisano, president and interim CEO of the MPAA. “The numerous co-productions with Indian studios over the past several years are evidence of a growing bond between our two industries. Today’s action is an important step toward furthering that growth.”

Paramount Pictures Chairman and CEO Brad Grey said, “Paramount is honored to host these important discussions, which usher in a new era of strategic partnership. We hope this groundbreaking collaboration will yield more co-productions and alliances, greater films and a stronger global film industry.”

The Indian delegation was led by Hindi producer Bobby Bedi and Tamil producer and Film Federation of India president L. Suresh, along with other representatives from the major Indian production houses of Reliance BIG Entertainment and UTV Motion Pictures.

The delegation came to Los Angeles for a two-day summit with the Hollywood studios, California officials, and other film related companies to discuss economic development and collaboration.

Producer Bobby Bedi, representing the Indian delegation, said, “Hollywood and Bollywood are two industries that are economically robust and represent significant economic and cultural interests of their respective countries. India has always held a fascination for Hollywood, and this agreement pulls us closer together with the aim of sharing ideas and best practices on domestic and international film production. We look forward to working with the city of Los Angeles to increase Indian production here.”

Producer L. Suresh said, “In addition to the Hindi film industry, the southern and regional Indian film industries also welcome the opportunity to work hand and hand with Hollywood. Already we have seen significant collaboration in technology between Hollywood and South India, and we will soon see collaborations in production.”

Past big budget Indian productions filmed in Los Angeles include: Kites (2010), My Name is Khan (2010), Kambakkht Ishq (2009), Kaante (2002), and Pardes (1997).

This is the second major step towards economic development and cooperation between Hollywood and the Indian film industry this year. In March, the two industries came together in Mumbai to launch the Alliance Against Copyright Theft, a Bollywood-Hollywood content protection coalition in India.

Other joint ventures and co-productions between individual Hollywood studios and Indian production houses include My Name is Khan (2010), Atithi Tum Kab Jaoge (2010), Lahore (2010), Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hain (2010), Khichdi (2010), We Are Family (2010), Do Dooni Chaa r  ( 2010), Chandni Chowk to China (2009), Quick Gun Murugan (2009), Raaz the Mystery Continues (2009), Roadside Romeo (2008), Saas Bahu Aur Sensex (2008), Saawariya (2007). Several, such as Zokkomon and Dum Maro Dum, are also slated for 2011.

Indian investment in Hollywood has been steadily increasing, most notably with Indian entertainment conglomerate Reliance’s production and distribution deal with Dreamworks SKG.

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