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20th Century Fox to leave India

The Hollywood studio has decided to wind up its operations in India, creating a flutter in Bollywood circles. In Hindi
PTI | By Indo-Asian News Service, Mumbai
UPDATED ON JAN 29, 2005 05:06 PM IST

Hollywood studio 20th Century Fox has decided to wind up its operations in India, creating a flutter in film circles in Mumbai.

A month after the CEO of Fox's Indian office, Aditya Shastri, quit the company to join UTV, Fox's Asia Pacific head has issued notices to employees about the studio closing down its Indian operations, reported Bollywood portal Glamsham.

Refusing to comment on the "exact reasons", Fox's marketing manager Paresh Manjrekar said: "It is a fact that the market for dubbed English films is not the same as it used to be once upon a time. A majority of English films, apart from a handful few, have got a poor response at the box-office in recent times.

"Considering the publicity costs and the efforts involved in releasing a film, it may not be a profitable proposition. But I would not like to make any comment yet on the exact reasons that prompted the development."

Meanwhile, trade analysts too are buzzing with reports about collective losses on several films accrued in the recent past, although Fox's latest release "Garfield" netted a profit of Rs 2.5 million.

Fox, which opened its office in 1932, had in the past few years been looking at further diversifying its operations in India by participating in the dubbed film market and joining in Hindi film distribution.

Now Fox has even instructed its logo to be withdrawn from the publicity and posters of forthcoming film Bullet, for which it had acquired the distribution rights.

The film shot entirely in Bulgaria was the last among the many films that Fox had acquired for distribution, besides Pinjar, Tehzeeb, Bollywood Calling and Ek Haseena Thi, for which it had tied up with the Ram Gopal Varma Productions.

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