Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions to rev up projects by 2009

MUMBAI: Karan Johar’s Dharma Productions has ambitious plans up its sleeves. While the next film from the Bollywood bellwether will only be released in 2009, plans are to have as many as three releases per year from then onwards.

What’s more, the ground has already been laid for the same. However, Johar refuses to venture into the distribution business or go public with his company.

After announcing his directorial project with Shah Rukh Khan and Kajol with the working title Khan, Johar is now working out the details of the same.

Johar has also signed Rang De Basanti screenplay writer Renzil D’silva to direct a movie for his banner. The yet untitled film will star Saif Ali Khan and Kareena Kapoor. The dialogues for the movie will be penned by Anurag Kashyap. The release is being planned for sometime in 2009.

Speaking exclusively to Businessofcinema.com on his company’s expansion plans, Johar says, “2009 is a crucial year for me. I have certain plans chalked out for my production house. The idea is to release one film in 2009 and from then on three films every year. I want to scrutinize how that works for us, probably then we will increase the number of projects.”

Johar has a body of young directors under him who will be churning out one project every year. This is very much the conventional way adopted by most producers like Aditya Chopra and Sooraj R Barjatya.

Tarun Mansukhani who assisted Johar since his debut (Kuch Kuch Hota Hai) will be one of the directors working under him. On the other hand, Cinevistaas’ Siddharth Malhotra has also signed a three film deal with Dharma Productions, wherein Malhotra will be directing the movies. “We are currently working on the script for Siddharth,” informs Johar.

Besides these, Johar is also gung ho about his debut film Kuch Kuch Hota Hain’s animated version, which is being directed by Mansukhani. The animation of the film titled Kuchi Kuchi Hota Hai is being done by Prana Studios. “This film too will be released by 2009. Our tie-up with Prana Studios has been very fruitful. We are looking at more deals in the future,” adds Johar.

The director cum producer is currently judging a reality show on NDTV Imagine. Dharma Productions also holds an equity stake in NDTV Imagine. Johar is soon slated to launch his talk show on the channel. “It won’t be the same as Koffee with Karan because that’s Star India’s property. This one will be on the lines of talk shows in the West. It will not be restricted to the film fraternity, I will be extending the format to another level,” concludes Johar.