Shashanka Ghosh launches website to co-produce Hollywood movie

MUMBAI: It is now possible to co-produce a Hollywood film, online! Shashanka Ghosh and Mahesh Murthy have launched a website, whereby people could register with as little as $100 and reap the benefits as a co-producer with a “potential 30 per cent overall return as financier-producer.”

Waisa Bhi Hota Hai-Part II director Shashanka Ghosh, describes this initiave as a “public limited company.”

Every cost and revenue detail is listed on the site, which also has a progress meter to check how much money has been raised. Over $14,000 has already come in – a little less than two per cent of what the filmmakers hope to raise in just a couple of weeks, with co-producers from Singapore, US, Canada and India swiping their credit cards to get the movie made, informs an official release.

The web site also indicates if the movie is in the pre-production, production or post-production phase. Thus the progress of the film can also be traced.

The film Betelenut Killers, to be released across North America, Europe, the UK and Asia, deals with an Indian family who run a shop in the US and find a new competitor in a pretty girl. When several discounts offered, fail to help them retain customers, they issue a contract to kill her. However the hitman agrees to do it for free, on the condition that they help him get an immigration visa.

Co-producer Murthy said, “We’ll know by early 2007 how the movie’s done – but we think given the low cost – just about a million dollars and its international appeal, it could be a decent hit.” Apart from co-producing the movie, he is also the founder & CEO of Pinstorm Technologies Ltd, the search engine marketing firm that is supporting the movie online.

Shashanka Ghosh co-writer and director of the movie said, “You can either call the idea inspired – or born from sheer desperation. Here we were, a couple of Indians in Mumbai – and we wanted to make a Hollywood movie in English. And that meant the regular lot of producers in India had no idea what we were up to – and we were complete unknowns to the bigwigs in Hollywood. The more we kicked the idea around – and we’ve been doing so for eight years – the more we felt that the net was the place to go.”

When asked about the shooting of the movie Ghosh adds, “We hope to shoot in North America in fall of 2006 and we’re asking all our friends – and their friends – and their friends’ friends – to go to the net and swipe their cards.”

Murthy adds, “We think 30 per cent is our expectation of what a co-producer can earn – apart from of course credits on the screen and the pleasure of seeing a good idea come to life.”