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India TV rights hit INR 410 million for Agneepath remake

Agneepath, the much anticipated remake of the 1990 Hindi movie, has sealed a reported INR 410 million (US$8.37 million) in a TV rights deal way ahead of its cinematic release in 2012, according to The Times of India (TOI).

The broadcasting rights agreement with Zee Cinema represents almost 60% of the movie's production costs, according to the report.

"We have acquired the satellite rights of Agneepath but cannot disclose the terms of the deal," Jayantilal Gada, CMD, Pen India (the agency which acquires satellite rights for Zee Cinema) is quoted as saying in the TOI.

Agneepath, directed by Karan Malhotra, is a remake of the 1990 Hindi film of the same name. Hrithik Roshan will play the role originally played by Amitabh Bachachan, while Priyanka Chopra will be the new female lead, and Sanjay Dutt will play the villain.

Another movie scheduled for cinematic release in 2012, Aamir Khan's Dhuan, has also reportedly already received INR 400 million for TV rights, while Salman Khan's Ek Tha Tiger may fetch even larger sums than Agneepath has earned.

The sums involved in acquiring anticipated hit movies for broadcast prior to their release in India has escalated by up to 200% which is "unrealistic and unsustainable", independent distributor and analyst Suniel Wadhwa told the TOI.

Studios or independent producers usually sell the broadcast rights to a TV network for a set period of between five to 12 years.

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