- BIG Pictures forays into Marathi cinema with ‘Samaantar’
- ‘Samaantar’ directed by legendary Amol Palekar
- National award winner Amol Palekar makes an acting comeback after 22 years, along with Sharmila Tagore in ‘Samaantar’
The film is under production and slated for release early 2009
BIG Pictures, a Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group company, announced its entry into the Marathi film industry with a film titled ‘Samaantar’. The film has been written and co-directed by Sandhya Gokhale along with Amol Palekar. The film stars Amol Palekar, Sharmila Tagore, Makarand Deshpande, Sameer Dharmadhikari, Kishor Kadam, Aishwarya Narkar and Radhika Apte.
Post the national award for his English feature film, ‘Quest’, ‘Samaantar’ marks Amol Palekar’s 12th directorial venture. The film has been shot in Pune and Kolkata. Amol Palekar, commenting on BIG Pictures acquiring ‘Samaantar’ says, “I feel fortunate with BIG Pictures acquiring ‘Samaantar’, the film will be promoted and released in a deserving manner.”
Commenting on BIG Pictures entry into Marathi films, Rajesh Sawhney, President, Reliance Big Entertainment said, “Cinema speaks a global language; a good film holds no language barrier. We are producing regional films in several languages. Considering the contribution of Marathi cinema, its exceptional performers and the audience response, we felt compelled to be a part of the Marathi film industry. We are proud to bring to audiences ‘Samaantar’, directed by legendary Amol Palekar, coupled with exceptional performances, great music and a heart wrenching story.”
Amol Palekar returns to acting after a gap of 22 years. “After Vidhu Vinod Chopra’s ‘Khamosh’ in 1996, I stopped acting because it did not interest me. I found Keshav’s role in ‘Samaantar’ exciting. Directing a film and also acting in it is strenuous. But Sandhya, my co-director, made it easier.”
Yesteryear’s co-star Sharmila Tagore is sharing the screen with Mr. Palekar. Mrs. Tagore clarifies, “I was quite apprehensive about speaking Marathi dialogues, but Amol relaxed me all through. I enjoyed performing every scene.”
Sandhya Gokhale added further, “‘Samaantar’ reveals lost traces of two persons’ impeccable love. Sharmilajee has played a potter’s role while Amoljee’s character is of an industrialist, a slice of whose frozen past gets scratched accidentally. Their performances are brilliant.”
About Reliance Big
Reliance Big Entertainment is the flagship Media and Entertainment Company of Reliance – Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group, with significant presence in film entertainment, broadcasting and new media ventures.
RBEL is investing over USD 1 billion in its Filmed Entertainment business and will commence roll-out of its first set of Indian movies later this year.
The company has already signed a slew of top-end directors/producers, including Farhan Akhtar and Ritesh Sidhwani’s Excel Entertainment, Vidhu Vinod Chopra, Madhur Bhandarkar, Shyam Benegal, Sudhir Mishra, Vipul Shah, etc. Reliance Big Entertainment also acquired majority stake in ND Studio in Karjat earlier this year. Company has also built a state of the art animation studio in Pune: Big Animation, which will release its first movie later this year.
Reliance Big Entertainment recently announced development silos with Nicolas Cage’s Saturn Productions, Jim Carrey’s JC 23 Entertainment, George Clooney’s Smokehouse Productions, Chris Columbus’ 1492 Pictures, Tom Hank’s Playstone Productions, Brad Pitt’s Plan B Entertainment and Jay Roache’s Everyman Pictures.
Adlabs, a Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group Company, operates largest number of multiplex screens in India. Adlabs recently acquired 251 screens in the US and 51 screens in Malaysia.
Reliance Big Entertainment recently acquired iconic Lowry Digital Images, a leading image enhancement and restoration services company in the US.
The company has the largest FM radio network spanning 44 stations, offline and online movie rental business BiIGflix.com, and owns other leading new media initiatives like Zapak.com [No. 1 online games portal in India], BIGAdda.com [No. 1 Indian social network] and Jump Mobile [leading mobile gaming company that recently tie-up with Manchester United].