Zee, Excel Entertainment negotiations for Rock On go kaput

MUMBAI: Negotiations between Zee Motion Pictures and Excel Entertainment’s Ritesh Sidhwani, who were in talks for domestic distribution of Rock On, have fallen apart.

Earlier this week Businessofcinema.com had reported that Zee was eyeing the distribution space and had acquired Vijayata Films’ Chamku. Zee was in the final stage of negotiations for Rock On. The movie is a co-production between Excel Entertainment and Reliance BIG Pictures and Sidhwani was leading the negotiations with Zee for this deal.

Zee Motion Pictures director production Deepak Sharma confirmed that the deal had not been signed but refused to divulge any reasons for it. At the time of filing this story, Sidhwani remained unavailable for comment.

Sources close to the development inform that Zee was keen on domestically distributing Rock On and had even agreed to pay an amount as high as Rs 120 million (Rs 12 crores) for the same. However, there was disagreement between the two parties over the film’s distribution in some territories, which was to be licensed to a sub-distributor.

When contacted by Businessofcinema.com, Reliance Entertainment president Rajesh Sawhney said, “Reliance is well equipped to distribute its own movies in India and even internationally.”

Sources further adds that Reliance is not keen on encouraging third party distribution.

Rock On stars Farhan Akhtar, Arjun Rampal, Purab Kohli, Luke Kenny, Prachi Desai, Koel Puri and Shahana Goswami. The movie, which is directed by Abhishek Kapoor, is slated to release on 29 August.