Bollywood moves to different model


Indian giant Reliance Big Entertainment is pulling out the showbiz stops to promote its first English-language tentpole film in Cannes.

Although the $30 million "Kites" is not finished, Reliance and its new sales arm have flown in the film's star — and A-list Bollywood royalty — Hrithik Roshan for a Friday news conference. He will be accompanied by director Anurag Batra, producer Rakesh Roshan and Mexican model-turned-actress Barbara Mori for a rough-cut screening.

The picture underlines how far from the stereotypical Bollywood model some Indian companies are moving as they seek to broaden their markets at home and abroad. "Kites" is a romantic adventure filmed in multiple desert locations in the U.S. and Mumbai.

At Cannes last year, the company unveiled a slate of "Indian-based" movies, of which 18 will be completed this year, and a $300 million production commitment. That was in addition to the development and production "silos" it set up with Hollywood talent and separate from its partnership with the new-look DreamWorks.

Meanwhile, the India-based Eros Entertainment is giving a big Cannes launch to "Kambakkht Ishq," a romantic comedy about an Indian stuntman who makes it in Hollywood but still can't find love. The picture features Sylvester Stallone, Denise Richards and Brandon Routh alongside Indian stars Akshay Kapur and Kareena Kapoor.