Reliance, Universal Studios in theme park talks

$1.5 bil park would be located between Mumbai, Delhi: WSJ

NEW DELHI -- Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group is in talks with Universal Studios to build a $1.5 billion theme park and resort in India, The Wall Street Journal reported Saturday.

When contacted a R-ADAG spokesperson declined to comment on reports of the company entering into a joint venture with Universal Studios.

WSJ quoted a source stating that the theme park would be spread across 400 acres with the location still to be finalized between Mumbai and Delhi. The park would be on the lines of Universal's theme parks in Los Angeles, Orlando and Japan. In addition to featuring properties based on Hollywood titles such as “Jaws” and “ET," the park would also include Bollywood-inspired offerings.

But the WSJ report also warned that discussions are still ongoing and a deal could be reached this year but that talks are also at an early stage and could break down.

R-ADAG is DreamWorks' equal partner and also has various funding deals with A-listers such as Tom Hanks, Jim Carrey, Nicolas Cage and Brad Pitt. Reliance recently concluded an equal joint venture with CBS to launch a broadcasting venture here, details of which are expected to be announced in the coming weeks.

Meanwhile, a new theme park opened on the outskirts of Delhi Saturday called “The Kingdom of Dreams,” spread over six acres. A joint venture between event management company Wizcraft International Entertainment and the Apra Group of Companies, the theme park aims to offer an “incredible Indian experience” including a live Bollywood musical stage show and a handicrafts bazaar in addition to restaurants, bars and other offerings.