September 18, 2010, KOLKATA (Calcutta Tube): An innovative model for distributing and screening of quality Bengali films by Databazaar Media Ventures ( DMV ), a part of the Florida based Databazaar group of companies in USA, has thrown open a plethora of exciting opportunities for the film industry of West Bengal.
In a little over a year of the venture, DMV has successfully distributed nine Bengali films. In Kolkata to hand over the proceeds from the screening of the films, Oney Seal, founder of DMV and the Databazaar Group said, “this is the first time Bengali films are seeing income from overseas. Our venture has managed to take these films to a large audience comprising the Bengali diasporas as well as non-Indian population who watch foreign films”
DMV has also produced a film in Bengali language ‘Dwando’ which was directed by the national award-winning director Suman Ghosh. Dwando and the other Bengali films made by producers from Bengal are now readily available for pre-order wherever NRIs buy, rent or download movies —– on Netflix, Amazon, Best Buy, Target, iTunes, and Blockbuster etc. In effect, the DMV model today takes the films to many as 19,000 retail outlets in USA alone. This apart, DMV takes the films to theatres across USA in the major Bengali hubs offering a large audience to them. “This is very encouraging and proves beyond doubt that we have implemented a winning business model that fulfils the wishes of both the Bengali film producer as well as the NRI film viewer in North America. Our efforts have also ensured that quality Bengali films will now reach the entire ‘foreign film’ viewing market in North America.” Mr Seal said.
[ReviewAZON asin=”B003M5P9GK” display=”inlinepost”]The DMV model is proving to be a success because of high technological input which significantly cuts downs on marketing and distribution costs. The company has also introduced a movie channel in USA through the Internet Protocol route. With IP TV gaining popularity by the day, more and more films from India can be viewed in USA and Canada, where DMV is concentrating for the time being. “Online streaming also is becoming very popular, so we are also exploiting this medium”, Mr Seal added.
Till now, a worldwide release of Bengali films was unheard of. Besides, producers and distributors lacked the financial muscle to undertake serious marketing efforts outside the country. “Some of the movies made by modern day directors has enough fire power in them to be screened outside India and have even managed to pierce the language barrier to find large non-Indian viewership,” said Mr Seal. In the USA alone, there is an incredible 6 million plus viewership for contemporary cinema which is not made in English language.
The Bengali films of the urban and global genre till now have been suffering from a revenue gap between costs and revenue. On the other side, a huge North American market remained untapped. DMV now strives to bridge this gap and fulfill the wishes of the Bengali film producers and North American film viewer. “What was missing was substantial investment in the films to not only bring them mainstream American market, but also to market and promote them effectively.
Arijit Dutta, director, Priya Entertainment and a key member of DMV looking after content & acquisition, felt that the gap between production costs and domestic sales, which has been plaguing modern Bengali cinema, will now be suitably addressed through the opening up of the North American market.
About Databazaar Media Ventures
Databazaar Media Ventures acts as an exclusive gateway for Bengali films to North America, combining the latest in digital technologies with the best in traditional methods in a new, fusion distribution model that maximizes North American film revenues. We are the missing link that ensures the most effective marketing of modern Bengali films. Once selected by DMV’s Film Review Board, exclusive partner agreements ensure that titles acquired will reach over 19,000 online and retail stores across the US and Canada including major chains such as Best Buy, Target, Fry’s Electronics, Blockbuster, Netflix, Amazon and Wal-Mart, along with, theatrical releases in certain demographics. For more information please visit www.databazaarmedia.com.