Tollywood is heading the Bollywood way by releasing their movies worldwide.With the 75-million strong Telugu community spread across several countries, filmmakers are taking the "international markets" very seriously.The overseas rights of big budget flicks are sold for anything between Rs 1 crore and Rs 1.75 crore while for small budget flicks, the rights cost around Rs 10 lakhs.
Magadheera is being released in over 15 countries simultaneously and will play on 1,500 screens worldwide, confirm sources with Geeta Arts, the film's production house.
Naga Chaitanya's Josh, Ravi Teja's Anjaneyulu and Junior NTR's Adurs will also have simultaneous international releases. Sudhakar Kothamallella, managing partner of Great India films, which buys the overseas rights of over six Tollywood movies every year, says, "We have a tie-up with Adlabs in the US. They have seven screens where we screen these films. In the recent past,
Kick, Arundhati, Kotha Bangaru Lokam and Akashamantha did very well at the international Box Office."
Interestingly, to classify the popularity of actors, distributors use a grading system. Mahesh Babu and Pavan Kalyan movies are the most sought after by T'wood and they are placed in the 'A++' category along with directors like Shekar Kammula and Trivikram Srinivas. Nagarjuna, NTR Junior, Dil Raju and Charan belong to the 'A' category, while stars like Allu Arjun and Prabhas are placed in A- category.
Directors admit that it is primarily also a profit-driven move. Director P.C. Aditya, reveals, "The collections we get in 10 days from the US market is equal to the 100-day collection here since we are earning in dollars."
Shyam Prasad Reddy, the producer of Arundhati, agrees. "Every movie's business opportunity needs to be exploited. Though Telugu movies are not as big abroad as Hindi films, a decent revenue is being generated," he says. Film critics, who are all for this move, feel this trend is ringing in a great boom. Parcha Sarath Kumar, member of the Censor Board and a senior film critic, says, "Directors are also using this hype abroad to publicise the film here."