SA firm in big Bollywood deal

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TO NDR Ek-Tha-Tiger

In the presence of the South African Minister of Arts and Culture, Paul Mashatile, Avalon Group chief executive AB Moosa concluded the deal with Avtar Panesar, vice-president of international operations for Yash Raj Films, to distribute their 2012/2013 slate of Bollywood films – the first three of which are already tipped to be box office blockbusters in SA and around the world.

Ek Tha Tiger (Tiger), set to release internationally and in SA on August 15, stars one of the most charismatic stars of Indian cinema, Salman Khan, who has two of his recent films featuring in the top three highest-grossing films of all time in India.

Then the renowned producer-director Yash Chopra, and founder of Yash Raj Films, joins forces with one of the biggest romantic stars, Shah Rukh Khan, in a film – not yet titled – which also features the talents of Oscar winner and musical maestro AR Rahman, which is anticipated to release in November.

The third film of the first three titles is Dhoom 3 and is the third instalment in India’s biggest and most successful action franchises.

One of Indian cinema’s most respected and commercially successful stars, Aamir Khan, has signed to star in this film, set to release in 2013.

The deal, which marks the continuation of a long professional and personal relationship between the Moosa and Chopra families, confirms the commitment of the Avalon Group to bring only the best of Bollywood to South Africa.

Moosa said: “We are truly delighted to have secured this slate of envisaged blockbusters, not only because each one features Bollywood’s top stars but also because they are being produced by the renowned, admired and respected Yash Raj Studios. This is another milestone in Avalon’s history of bringing the biggest and best that Bollywood has to offer to South African audiences and living up to our motto ‘we bring you the stars’.”

Panesar also expressed joy at the deal: “South Africa is a very special and an important market for us and we are delighted with the continued relationship with Avalon and the Moosa family,” he said.

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