Eros International announced its current film production line-up for 2017-18. The company plans to produce over 50 films across multiple languages, making it the largest slate by any Indian studio this year, offering diversified marquee and content-driven films. In addition to this, the company will also continue to selectively acquire content on an opportunistic basis.
The company has ramped up its own productions encompassing a significant number of releases across budgets, genres, and languages through key partnerships including talented producer-director Aanand L Rai and their joint production entity Colour Yellow Production, Viki Rajani's NextGen Films, and Eros’ in-house franchise label Trinity Pictures.
Commenting on the company’s pipeline, Sunil Lulla, Managing Director, Eros International, said, “We are delighted to collaborate with some of the best creative forces in the business and build a strong portfolio of films. We continue to see great opportunity in nurturing talent, creating IP in-house, and remain focused on delivering our promise to provide wholesome entertainment to audiences with a right mix of popular and content-driven cinema.”
Following the critical and commercial successes of Raanjhanaa, Tanu Weds Manu Returns, Nil Battey Sannata and Happy Bhag Jayegi, Eros continues its association with Aanand L Rai and will roll out eight more titles with Colour Yellow, which include Rai’s directorial venture starring Shah Rukh Khan, a quirky romantic comedy titled Shubh Mangal Savdhaan by south director RS Prasanna, two films Mukkebaz and Manmarziyaan to be helmed by Anurag Kashyap, and Rahul Sankalya's Nimmo.
Post the success of Happy Bhag Jayegi, director Mudassar Aziz will reunite on a film he will direct along with another interesting collaboration with Navdeep Singh (of NH10 and Manorama Six Feet Under fame) for a project that is currently in the scripting stage. Additionally, a Malayalam film Moothon starring Nivin Pauly that Rai will be co-producing with Ajay Rai and Alan McAlex, to be directed by Geetu Mohandas, whose last film Liar's Dice was India’s official entry at the 87th Academy Awards, is also in the pipeline.
Speaking on the association, Rai said, “Eros and Colour Yellow share an amazing synergy, which reflects in the kind of films we make together, showcasing Indian ethos that touches hearts. What makes this association special is how, as partners, the teams bond and celebrate each project together.”
Eros' new slate also boasts of five films in association with Viki Rajani's NextGen Films, namely the blockbuster actor-director duo Tiger Shroff and Sabbir Khan’s action-packed musical Munna Michael, Sushant Singh Rajput’s space odyssey Chandamama Door Ke directed by Sanjay Puran Singh, and directors Rahul Dholakia and Sabbir Khan’s next projects along with another project titled Make in India to be announced soon. Dholakia adds, “Eros and NextGen are very established film companies and I’m looking forward to partnering with them in my next venture.”
Trinity Pictures, the company’s visionary venture and its in-house franchise label, has five franchises across new and diverse genres lined up in the next couple of years— a spy-superhero film Sniff directed by Amole Gupte, a live action bilingual (Hindi and Tamil) elephant film to be directed by multiple award winning Tamil director Prabhu Solomon, ace director Krish’s buddy cop film, which will be shot in Hindi and Tamil simultaneously featuring popular lead actors from both the south and Bollywood, and two Indo-China co-productions, a first for any Indian studio, Kabir Khan’s travel drama, and Siddharth Anand’s cross-cultural romantic comedy.
“It’s exciting to jointly develop the Indo-China project with Eros and I hope we create new milestones together. This project will reach out to a much wider audience as well as new geographies and territories, opening up the fastest growing film market of the world—China”, added director Khan.
Eros will release the much-awaited third instalment of the popular Sarkar franchise—Ram Gopal Varma’s Sarkar 3 and Vikram Motwane’s vigilante drama Bhavesh Joshi with Phantom Films, this year. With a focus on creating fresh concepts in new spaces, Eros is working with a pool of talented and established directors including Homi Adajania and Sriram Raghavan (Badlapur 2) in association with producer Dinesh Vijan of Maddock Films, Sujay Ghosh (Reunion), Raj & DK (Farzi) among others. Sequel to hit political thriller drama Nayak, Nayak 2 penned down by K.V. Vijayendra Prasad of Baahubali and Bajrangi Bhaijaan fame will also go on floor this year.
The Indian studio also continues to expand its regional presence this year with more than 25 releases across Bengali, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Malayalam, and Punjabi. Following their double success together with Bengali films Belaseshe and Praktan, Eros will release director duo Shiboprasad Mukherjee and Nandita Roy’s Posto this year. Also on the anvil is director Moinak Bhowmik’s Bibaho Diaries, Double Feluda director Sandip Ray’s next, two projects by Sujoy Ghosh, Kamleshwar Mukherjee’s Goodnight City, and a project each by directors Ranjan Ghosh, Raja Chandra, and Rabi Kinagi.
The company has also green-lit two Telugu projects by ace directors Chandu Mondeti (of Premam fame) and Maruti in association with IDream’s production division.
Four Marathi films are also slated to release: Baghtos Kay Mujra Kar by Hemant Dhome, which makes a strong statement on the current state of Shivaji’s forts across Maharashtra, sequel to the hit Coffee Ani Barach Kahi by Prakash Kunte, and another two films in association with Everest Entertainment.
Eros’ Tamil slate will offer a range of titles by established directors as well as new talent, which include Ramu Chellapa’s Enkitta Mothathe, Suresh Sangiah’s Oru Kidayin Karunai Manu, Manikandan’s Kadasi Vivasayi, Bharath Krishna’s Nervazhi, and another project with director Venkat Prabhu.
Post the release of the legendary tales of Char Sahibzaade and Banda Singh Bahadur, the company has also announced Punjabi films: 3D animation Guru Tegh Bahadur and Jaita to be directed by Harry Baweja.
Following the success of its Malayalam releases like Happy Wedding, IDI, etc., Eros continues to make successful inroads into Malayalam cinema with multiple releases coming up including C/o Saira Banu starring Manju Warrier, Amala Akineni directed by Antony Sony Sebastian; Ranjan Pramod’s Rakshadhikari Baiju Oppu with Biju Menon and Aju Varghese as leads; Sunday Holiday directed by Jis Joy starring Asif Ali, Sreenivasan, Lal Jose, and Asha Sharath, and another film to be directed by Thomas Sebastian.
This year will also see Eros’ debut into Kannada cinema with the release of Aake in association with K S Dreams and Nakshatra Productions directed by K M Chaitanya and starring Chiranjeevi Sarja and Sharmila Mandre.
Speaking on his association with Eros, leading Bengali director Shiboprasad Mukherjee said, “It’s been great to partner with Eros who recognize the importance and potential of regional cinema, opening newer markets in India and overseas.”
Jyoti Deshpande, Group CEO, Eros International, commented, “With this film slate, Eros demonstrates two fundamental strengths. Firstly, its firm footing on a dominant market leadership position built on the pillar of a wide, diverse portfolio of films and secondly, its ability to foresee market trends and adapt swiftly to step up its own production and co-production model over the content acquisition model. While demonetization in India was a temporary cloud over the business affecting footfalls in the short run, we see great opportunities including a cashless economy driving accelerated adoption of ErosNow, one of the leading OTT services in India with over 2 million paying subscribers and over 55 million users worldwide. A compelling film slate with winning budgets and not just winning scripts, backed by a well-oiled global distribution network that consistently opens new markets for Bollywood coupled with strong pre-sales and a game-changing early mover ErosNow digital strategy, positions Eros uniquely to capitalize on the rapidly growing Indian entertainment sector.”