LOS ANGELES - After several years of co-productions and joint investment, the two most prominent global film industries came together today for the signing of an historic declaration between the city of Los Angeles and the Indian film industry at Paramount Pictures Studios in Hollywood.

As part of the declaration, the city of Los Angeles and the Indian film industry, represented by the Film and Television Producers Guild of India and the Film Federation of India, agree to develop and strengthen motion picture production, distribution, technology, content protection and commercial cooperation between the two filmmaking communities. The two parties also support the creation of the Los Angeles-India Film Council to increase Indian film production in Los Angeles.

Speaking at the event, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said: "This declaration reinforces our city's commitment to attracting international production. In the past year, we have already seen Hindi movies such as My Name is Khan and Kites filmed in Los Angeles, and we enthusiastically welcome further Indian production in Los Angeles."

Mayor Villaraigosa was joined by California Film Commissioner Amy Lemisch, Paramount Pictures Chairman and CEO Brad Grey, and MPAA Special Policy Advisor Fritz Attaway, along with Indian Producers Bobby Bedi and L. Suresh.

"Our vibrant film communities share many of the same goals and concerns," said Bob Pisano, President and Interim CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America. "The numerous co-productions with Indian studios over the past several years are evidence of a growing bond between our two industries. Today's action is an important step toward furthering that growth."

Paramount Pictures Chairman and CEO Brad Grey said, "Paramount is honored to host these important discussions, which usher in a new era of strategic partnership. We hope this groundbreaking collaboration will yield more co-productions and alliances, greater films and a stronger global film industry."

The Indian delegation was led by eminent Hindi producer Bobby Bedi and Tamil producer and Film Federation of India President L. Suresh, along with other representatives from the major Indian production houses of Reliance BIG Entertainment and UTV Motion Pictures. The delegation came to Los Angeles for a two day summit with the Hollywood studios, California officials, and other film related companies to discuss economic development and collaboration.

Representing the Indian delegation, Producer Bobby Bedi noted, "Hollywood and Bollywood are two industries that are economically robust and represent significant economic and cultural interests of their respective countries. India has always held a fascination for Hollywood, and this agreement pulls us closer together with the aim of sharing ideas and best practices on domestic and international film production. We look forward to working with the City of Los Angeles to increase Indian production here." Producer L. Suresh asserted, "In addition to the Hindi film industry, the southern and regional Indian film industries also welcome the opportunity to work hand and hand with Hollywood. Already we have seen significant collaboration in technology between Hollywood and South India, and we will soon see collaborations in production."

Past big budget Indian productions filmed in Los Angeles include: Kites (2010), My Name is Khan (2010), Kambakkht Ishq (2009), Kaante (2002), and Pardes (1997).

This is the second major step towards economic development and cooperation between Hollywood and the Indian film industry this year. In March, the two industries came together in Mumbai to launch the Alliance Against Copyright Theft, a Bollywood-Hollywood content protection coalition in India.

Other joint ventures and co-productions between individual Hollywood studios and Indian production houses over the past several years include My Name is Khan (2010), Atithi Tum Kab Jaoge (2010), Lahore (2010), Jaane Kahan Se Aayi Hain (2010), Khichdi (2010), We Are Family (2010), Do Dooni Chaar (2010), Chandni Chowk to China (2009), Quick Gun Murugan (2009), Raaz the Mystery Continues (2009), Roadside Romeo (2008), Saas Bahu Aur Sensex (2008), Saawariya (2007). Several, such as Zokkomon and Dum Maro Dum, are also slated for 2011. Indian investment in Hollywood has been steadily increasing, most notably with Indian entertainment conglomerate Reliance's production and distribution deal with Dreamworks SKG.

 

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patrickfugitnews.pngSource: THR

Patrick Fugit will star alongside Matt Damon, Scarlett Johansson, Thomas Haden Church and Colin Ford in Cameron Crowe's adaptation of We Bought a Zoo. Fugit's role in the film is being kept a secret. Zoo follows the tale of a man named Benjamin Wee who purchases a dilapidated old zoo. While renovating the zoo, Mee and his family must also take care of his wife who is dying of brain cancer. Damon will play the title role.

Fugit and Crowe famously teamed up on 2000's Almost Famous.

We Bought a Zoo will be Crowe's first film since 2005's Elizabethtown. It's slated to hit theaters on December 23, 2011.

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Scottsdale, Ariz. -- Harkins Theatres announced today the ascension of Barry Bruno to Head Film Buyer. Bruno will oversee the negotiation and procurement of all films presented on all of Harkins Theatres' screens throughout five states, including art and independent films.

Bruno has nearly 30 years in the film and exhibition industry, beginning in Chicago in the early 1980's at Twentieth Century Fox, before moving over to Paramount Pictures. Throughout the 1990's, Bruno spent 12 years at Walt Disney Company as Director of Sales before moving to Phoenix and joining Harkins Theatres nearly six years ago.
"Barry knows the ins and outs of film buying and has the experience to back it up. But more importantly, he's one of the biggest movie fans I know," says Dan Harkins, Owner and CEO of Harkins Theatres. "His love and knowledge of the entertainment industry gives Harkins the exceptional expertise to evaluate a film's marketability and maximize our future success."

"Barry has been a great asset to Harkins Theatres during a time of great transition within our industry," says Mike Bowers, President and COO of Harkins Theatres. "We look forward to Barry's leadership as we further enhance our film buying team in order to best navigate the future of moviegoing."

Bruno lives in Scottsdale with his wife and two dogs.

 

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robertdenironews2.pngHollywood, CA -- Robert De Niro will be honored at next January's Golden Globe® Awards telecast with the Cecil B. DeMille Award for his outstanding contribution to the entertainment field. Philip Berk, president of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA), was joined by Golden Globe Award-nominated actor Kevin Spacey in making the announcement this morning.

The Cecil B. DeMille Award will be presented to De Niro at The 68th Annual Golden Globe® Awards on Sunday, January 16, 2011, LIVE coast-to-coast on NBC from 5:00-8:00 p.m. (PST)/8:00-11:00 p.m. (EST) from the Beverly Hilton Hotel with host Ricky Gervais.

Chosen by the HFPA Board of Directors, the Cecil B. DeMille Award is given annually to the talented individuals who have made an incredible impact on the world of entertainment. Recent recipients include Martin Scorsese (2010), Steven Spielberg (2009), Warren Beatty (2007), Anthony Hopkins (2006), Robin Williams (2005), Michael Douglas (2004), Gene Hackman (2003), Harrison Ford (2002), Al Pacino (2001), and Barbra Streisand (2000).

With more than 70 film credits, De Niro launched his prolific motion picture career in Brian De Palma's The Wedding Party in 1969. He quickly received accolades from the New York Film Critics Circle in recognition of his critically acclaimed performances in Bang the Drum Slowly and Martin Scorsese's Mean Streets.

In 1974, De Niro received his first Academy Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for his portrayal of the young Vito Corleone in The Godfather, Part II. His extraordinary portrayal of Jake La Motta in Scorsese's Raging Bull earned him his second Oscar, this time for Best Actor in a Leading Role, and his first Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture Actor - Drama.

De Niro has earned seven additional Golden Globe nominations, garnering nods for his work as Travis Bickle in Scorsese's acclaimed Taxi Driver; as Jimmy Doyle in New York, New York; as a Vietnam vet in Michael Cimino's The Deer Hunter; as Jack Walsh in Martin Brest's Midnight Run; as ex-con Max Cady in Scorsese's remake of the 1962 classic Cape Fear; as insecure mob boss Paul Vitti in Harold Ramis' Analyze This; and as Jack Byrnes in Jay Roach's comedy Meet the Parents.

In 2009, De Niro received the coveted Kennedy Center Honor for his distinguished acting. He also received the Hollywood Actor Award from the Hollywood Film Festival and the Stanley Kubrick Award from the BAFTA Britannia Awards. In addition, AARP the magazine gave De Niro the 2010 Movies for Grownups Lifetime Achievement Award.

De Niro's recent film credits include Nu Image Films' psychological thriller Stone and 20th Century Fox's Machete. His upcoming projects include Little Fockers, the third installment of Tribeca Productions' Meet the Parents franchise; Universal Pictures' The Dark Fields; Filmauro's Italian romantic comedy Manuale d'amore 3; and Ambience Entertainment's action thriller The Killer Elite.

De Niro takes pride in the development of his production company Tribeca Productions, the Tribeca Film Center - which he founded with Jane Rosenthal in 1988 - and in the Tribeca Film Festival, which he founded with Rosenthal and Craig Hatkoff in 2001 as a response to the attacks on the World Trade Center. The festival was conceived to foster the economic and cultural revitalization of Lower Manhattan through an annual celebration of film, music and culture. The festival's mission is to promote New York City as a major filmmaking center and help filmmakers reach the broadest possible audiences.

Through Tribeca Productions, De Niro develops projects in which he serves in a combination of capacities, including producer, director and actor.

Tribeca's A Bronx Tale in 1993 marked De Niro's directorial debut. He later directed and co-starred in The Good Shepherd with Matt Damon and Angelina Jolie.

 

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