Disney, UTV in sales, distrib'n partnership

Dis will continue to handle marketing of films in India

DUBAI -- Indian film and television giant UTV has agreed to handle all sales and distribution of Disney films in India, UTV Software Communications and Disney said Wednesday.

Disney will continue to handle its own marketing, the companies said in an announcement made by Mahesh Samat, Disney's senior vp and managing director in India, Anthony Marcoly; Disney's president of international sales and distribution; and Siddharth Roy Kapur, CEO of UTV Motion Pictures.

"Disney is thrilled to have UTV as distribution partners for our films in India. UTV's leadership in India's rapidly growing film production and distribution space will strengthen our initiatives to build a family entertainment brand in the country by increasing the reach of our Hollywood films here," Samat said.

UTV, known for such hits as "Rang De Basanti," and for co-producing Ashutosh Gowariker's 2008 boxoffice topper "Jodhaa-Akbar," also works in India with Fox Searchlight and Will Smith's Overbrook Entertainment. Its forthcoming slate includes Abbas Mustan's "Race" and M. Night Shyamalan's "The Happening."