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New Product Launch ( An Art Film)

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NEW PRODUCT LAUNCH By Ashish Babaria Sandeep Satishchandra Shalini Mukerji Aabhas Rastogi

COMPANY NAME : Sasha Production House Established in 2000, Sasha is Indias first, fully integrated Content Creation and Distribution Company. We have expertise in producing Motion Pictures, Film Distribution and Marketing, Ad Film Production, Corporate Films, Live Events and Special Projects. Sasha is equipped to meet the content needs of both consumers and clients alike by providing customised solutions across segments. Today, it is one of the leading corporates with a fully integrated in-house infrastructure for production across various divisions. Sasha produces innovative and quality films through an efficient film making process, by integrating content production, distribution, tie-ups for exhibitions, broadcasting and music rights. Its deep understanding of the global audience, genres and markets has led to producing and partnering meaningful and commercially viable cinema products. Its corporate practices include adopting new systems and technologies, following transparent accounting practices, expanding entertainment markets, improving consumer connect through content, market research, and value chain integration.

PRODUCT : Painting Hussain

The product in our New Product Launch is a movie. The script in itself is a story that is off-beat as compared to the modern, generic commercial drivel usually dished out of Bollywood. The film belongs to the broad genre of Parallel Indian Cinema- a term that is essentially used for any kind of cinema that is not traditionally Bollywood. Essentially our aim as marketers is to promote the film both locally and internationally and stress on the fact that Indian Cinema is not just about song and dance interspersed within a weak plot.

PRODUCT CONCEPT: The film Painting Hussain is a biography of M.F. Hussains life, portraying his childhood, career and the controversies that have surrounded him throughout his life. It is a film designed for a niche market, and for the curious admirers in the artistic community. Painting Hussain is a two hour film that will debut in India and will also be shown at film festivals across the globe.

ASSUMPTIONS : 1. We assume that the movie has been made in two languages. English and Hindi. 2. All information regarding M. F. Hussain has been researched thoroughly and has been used in the making of the movie. 3. All distribution rights of the film are with Sasha Production House. 4. Sasha Production House has the ancillary rights to distribute the film on DVD, CDs and Television. 5. We assume that 17th September 2012 is a Friday and that there is no other block buster releasing on the afore mentioned date. 6. Each of Hussains muses play cameo roles in the film, portraying themselves.

MARKETING INFORMATION SYSTEM: Our product is a biopic on M.F. Hussain. We use data from the last few biography movies to understand & learn how they had marketed their products & where they went wrong-Once upon a time in Mumbai, Asoka, The Legend of Bhagat Singh and Bose: The Forgotten Hero, etc. MARKETING INTELLIGENCE SYSTEM: Different stories & different scripts were screened & out of them the biography of M.F. Hussain was selected. MARKETING RESEARCH : A lot of filmmakers internationally are using Market Research, Focus Group Discussions and Test Screenings as a tool to gauge initial feedback about their films. However, many of the Indian filmmakers still show reluctance towards Market Research/ Target Group Testing/ Title Testing etc. prior to movie production/ release and rely on their gut feel and experience. The trend of research is not new. In fact many years ago Mr.Raj Kapoor used to show his films to his close family and friends pre-release and ask for their feedback. Aamir Khan still does that with his films. It's just that we don't use the term Research for that. The objective of conducting Focus Group Discussions, Test Screenings etc. is to get a varied point of view. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. For e.g. the story of Devdas had already been made in 3 different versions before our film Dev D. If we had shown our film Dev D to people and asked for their views, they would have shunned the idea but we didn't do any research and went ahead with our conviction and the results are there for all to see.

There is a vast difference between consumers of an FMCG product and consumers of a film. I don't think consumers can decide how a film is just by watching the rough cut. I don't think they have the competence to suggest corrective action. In a story of a film there are many layers and complexities. At the end of the day, Research is just a tool and will be as good or bad as the person who designs it. Ram Mirchandani of Eros International, a studio which has some biggies lined up for release this year, gave an interesting real life example which happened to him, "Last year around April- May we had begun work on a film called Chalo Dilli starring Lara Dutta and Vinay Pathak. All of a sudden, we thought let's add an item song to the narrative of the film. The director Shashant Shah was quite upset as he felt that there was no need for such a song as the script itself was compelling enough. However we conducted Focus Group discussions across various demographics and to our surprise found out that 90% of people wanted an item song to be included in the film. This was even before 'Munni' or 'Sheila' released and was indeed an eye-opener for us and like you may have guessed the film does have an item song now. So in short you need not always listen to the findings of the market research but it can be insightful at times. It is important for a studio like ours which works on 10-20 films a year to get inputs from Market Research. While the topic did have its share of believers and non-believers, Jaideep Sahni summed it all up quite beautifully when he said, "At the marketing stage, research can be very effective and productive for us. In terms of judging a semi-made film's rough cut, it may or may not be useful as the process to incorporate the suggestions arrived at by the research can be quite complicated. You stand the risk of doing neuro-surgery with a pair of boxing gloves. However, to use research as a tool at the green-lighting stage of a project, is absolutely ridiculous." Painting Hussain - the film is based on the facets people might be interested to know about. One should not portray only significant things about a persons life but facts that are representative of him as a person too. There was a film on Ambedkar and critics wrote that the film was for history lovers and not for viewers. Biopics demand seriousness, there should be no sugarcoating done on them. However for this product, Market research becomes a necessity since it is a biopic about the Picasso of India. SCANNING THE MARKETS :

From underworld figures and political activists to famous artists and star athletes, Bollywood is going biographical with a series of films based on, or inspired by, real lives. The first to hit screens is Once Upon A Time in Mumbai, a thriller set in the 1970s about a power struggle between two gangsters, complete with big hair, even bigger moustaches, wing-collar shirts and flares. Launching a movie about a controversial figure like MF Hussain in India poses a posse of problems. MF Hussain was a prominent figure in the Art Industry. MF Hussain was instrumental

in spearheading a wave of Indian Modernism during the 1940s. He has been widely regarded as the "Picasso of India" and has influenced a whole generation of artists in the country. He amassed a fortune but maintained a bank balance of zero. He applied the formal lessons of European modernists like Czanne and Matisse to scenes from national epics like the Mahabharata, Ramayana and to the Hindu pantheon. Hence he has remained a controversial painter. He self-exiled himself from India and sought refuge in London. Biopics that have been released in India have generally fared poorly when the parameters taken into consideration involve raking in the moolah. However, critics have been cynical about rating a movie by its box office performance. It may reflect the films profitability but not its success. The markets for such biopics in India are mainly restricted to the major metros and the second-tier cities that are sprouting all over across the country. The untapped markets include the Indian hinterland and the rural area where the audience still views as cinema as a source of entertainment. These are generally the target audience for commercial Bollywood films. The Art Industry is still in its nascent stage in India. MF Hussain being an artist, his story is generally not that well known amongst the Indian masses The challenge hence would be to generate interest interest amongst the target audience. M. F. Hussain is well known artist in the International Art circles. Celebrated in London and heralded as a modern day art genius in the West, the movie has a market abroad. Western Society has a mature outlook to Art. Their awareness is higher. Traditionally Biopics from India have done well internationally. Parallel cinema from India finds takers globally. Eg. Dhobi Ghat did good business abroad thanks to positive reviews in International Film Festivals like The Berlinale and the Venice International Film Festival. This is the best way of launching the movie. The positive buzz created abroad can be used as a promotional tool. The International audience will be sympathetic to his plight as a fallen artist. We can position our movie accordingly through our marketing strategy. MARKETING ENVIRONMENT: Muqbool Fida Hussa