Indian multiplex chains PVR and Inox, which merged earlier this year, have launched a combined distribution arm PVR Inox Pictures, formerly PVR Pictures, “to increase investments in content acquisition to streamline high quality content for the Indian market, generate further opportunity for underrepresented storytellers and independent creators, and deliver a robust content slate to the Indian audience.”
PVR Inox operates a network of 1689 cinema screens in 361 properties across 115 cities in India and Sri Lanka, and holds 43% share of multiplex screens in India. PVR Inox Pictures is the largest independent distributor of foreign language films and a prominent distributor of Indian films, in India.
“With two large forces coming together, the scale of opportunities is unprecedented. PVR Inox Pictures will continue to serve as a partner to the content producers across the globe and expand the quality and depth of content that is made available to Indian consumers. PVR Inox Pictures is better positioned than ever to generate value for international producers, sales agents, the independent film community and studios,” said Sanjeev Kumar Bijli, executive director, PVR Inox Limited, at the Cannes film market on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, while there are aggressive expansion plans, 50 screens are being shut down over the next six months, the company revealed in its consolidated financial results for the quarter and the 12-month period ended March 31, 2023. “These properties are loss making, or housed in malls which have reached the end of their life cycle with little hope of any revival,” PVR Inox said. The company reported a consolidated net loss of $40 million for the period, mainly due to the underperformance of Bollywood films.
North American content marketplace NATPE Global will return to Miami from January 16-18, 2024 at the InterContinental Hotel, a large-scale luxury convention venue located in the heart of Miami’s downtown district.
“The entertainment industry is exploding with change, creating new distribution opportunities and innovative ways to monetize content. At the same time, securing early access to new hit programming has never been more competitive or crucial,” said Russell Goldstein, president and CEO of the event’s owner, Brunico Communications Ltd. “NATPE Global brings the entire media ecosystem together under one umbrella to do business in the world’s most valuable market for content.”
Sky has set three-part series “7/7: Britain’s Day of Terror” (working title) which will launch on Sky Documentaries and streamer Now in 2025 to coincide with the 20th anniversary of the 7/7 bombings. The Sky original documentary series aims to be the definitive account of the events in London on July 7, 2005 when 52 people were killed and more than 700 injured as part of an Al-Qaeda campaign.
Produced by Blast Films, a Sky Studios company, the series will follow three perspectives in parallel: that of the investigators desperately hunting for answers; the ordinary civilians embroiled in the attacks; and the unheard voices from those closely connected to the perpetrators.
The series was commissioned for Sky Documentaries by Zai Bennett, Sky’s MD of content, Poppy Dixon, director of documentaries and factual and Tom Barry, commissioning editor. Danny Horan serves as executive producer and Karim Shah is producer. NBCUniversal Global Distribution will handle international sales of the series on behalf of Sky Studios.
Sky and Sony Pictures Television (SPT) have revealed a multi-year extension of their partnership, ensuring that Sky Cinema and Sky Entertainment customers in the U.K. and Ireland will continue to access Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) feature films and SPT television series.
This renewed deal will bring some of SPE’s biggest titles and franchises to Sky Cinema customers, including “Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse,” “Gran Turismo,” “Equalizer 3” and the upcoming feature films in the Sony Pictures Universe of Marvel Characters, including “Kraven the Hunter,” “El Muerto,” and “Madame Web.” Additionally, recent hits such as Whitney Houston biopic “Whitney: I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and Tom Hanks’ “A Man Called Otto” will be included in the slate. Sky Entertainment customers will also have access to future seasons of hit series, including “The Good Doctor” and “S.W.A.T.”
The multi-year extension also allows Sky Store customers to buy or rent film and TV series from the Sony Pictures library. The deal also includes live and on demand content for streaming service Now.
Banijay U.K. has launched DSP Films, a new creative label within DSP with a focus on premium documentaries. Graeme McAulay will be the MD of the new division, reporting into Donna Clark, MD of DSP. McAulay will join in June from Blast Films where he is currently co-creative director overseeing a raft of premium documentary series for both SVOD and linear platforms.
At DSP Films, McAulay will lead the development of a new slate of premium documentaries for both streamers and U.K. broadcasters. A BAFTA, Emmy and RTS award-winning documentary maker, McAulay’s recent EP credits include Channel 4’s BAFTA-nominated expose “Jeremy Kyle Show: Death On Daytime” and Netflix docu-series “Missing: Dead Or Alive.”
U.K. broadcaster ITV has commissioned six-part thriller “Code of Silence,” starring Deaf actor Rose Ayling-Ellis, written by Catherine Moulton and produced by Mammoth Screen. The series follows Deaf catering worker, Alison Woods who’s struggling to make ends meet, juggling two jobs, in a police canteen and a local bar, while also doing her best to support her Deaf mum, Julie. When cop Ashleigh Francis calls on Alison to lip read the conversations of some dangerous criminals, she is plunged into a new and exhilarating world.
The drama will premiere on ITV and be available for streaming on ITVX and is distributed internationally by ITV Studios.
Banijay is the latest company to adopt the Film and TV Charity’s Whole Picture toolkit, an online resource covering all stages of the production process with the aim of improving mental health. Other companies that have rolled out the toolkit are BBC Content, Sky, Channel 4 and ITV. “The Whole Picture Toolkit’s online platform is full of a wealth of resources, a one stop shop that puts mental health and wellbeing at the heart of your production,” says the charity’s Anna Mishcon.