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Spanish is new Bollywood mantra

Hrithik Roshan could very well be the next Spanish heartthrob. For, in May, the superhit Kaho Naa... Pyar Hai will hit the big screen in 25 Spanish-speaking countries. With some key changes ? it will dubbed in Spanish and have a new title, Reencuentro Con el Destino.

india Updated: Jan 11, 2004 11:17 IST

Hrithik Roshan could very well be the next Spanish heartthrob. For, in May, the superhit Kaho Naa... Pyar Hai will hit the big screen in 25 Spanish-speaking countries. With some key changes — it will dubbed in Spanish and have a new title, Reencuentro Con el Destino.

Says Shashank Jare, the CEO of Filmkraft, Rakesh Roshan’s film production company: “Our survey showed that dubbing can work wonders if the target audience can identify with the subject. So while Karan Arjun and Koyla too were on the list, we zeroed in on Kaho Naa because it has a universal subject.”

The Rajshris were perhaps the first off the blocks when in 1990 they dubbed Maine Pyar Kiya in Spanish. The Salman Khan starrer, renamed Te Amo, ran for nine weeks in Peru. Says a Rajshri spokesperson, “We switched to sub-titles later because the emotions of a Hindi film cannot be projected properly by dubbing.”

It’s not just super-hits waiting to invade the Spanish market. The recently released comedy Fun2shh starring Paresh Rawal — which got a thorough drubbing at the box-office at home — is also ready for dubbing.

Says Viveck Vaswani, creative consultant for the film, “Almost 400 million people speak Spanish. But what will work in our favour is that Indians and the Spanish have similar mannerisms.”

Vaswani says Hindi films with a heavy dose of songs and wedding scenes do not go down well with a foreign audience. ''But a film like, say, Feroz Khan’s Janasheen, can work well in the Spanish market. They will identify with the looks of Bollywood actors like Salman, Fardeen Khan, John Abraham and Dino.''

Though Bollywood has discovered that its song-and-dance formula works beyond NRI shores, the formula will be slightly altered. The Spanish version of Kaho Naa will retain just two songs.


New markets

Spanish: Coffee, starring Mahima, being made in Spanish, Hindi
Market : Latin America, Spain
Malay : Rakesh Roshan’s Filmkraft may dub films in Malay
Market : Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Brunei
Chinese: Shakti Samanta film, starring Dino Morea, Chinese actress
Market : China, Singapore, Taiwan, US

First Published: Jan 11, 2004 00:00 IST