The long-gestating fusion pic, starring Ali Larter and Bollywood star Salman Khan, will be rolled out on 80-100 prints in the US, around 50 in the UK and 300 plus in India. Filmed in English, the $10m production has been dubbed into Hindi for the Indian release, although some English prints will also be distributed.
Co-produced by Adlabs and LA-based Hyperion Pictures, the film tells the story of an American actress, stranded in Mumbai, who gets cast in a Bollywood musical and falls for her choreographer.
Billed as the first true US-India co-production when first announced in 2003, the film is unusual for an Indian-themed crossover production in that it has a US, rather than overseas Indian, director in Willard Carroll (Playing By Heart).
Since the shoot in Mumbai and Rajasthan in 2005, the producers have been working on the special effects and figuring out the best international release strategy. At one point, Becker Films International was shopping the film overseas although Adlabs is now representing all world rights.
The delay may work against the film, but then in the meantime, Larter's star has risen due to her role in hit sci-fi TV series Heroes.
The film also marks the first time that Adlabs has handled distribution to mainstream theatres in the US - where it has an office that handles traditional Bollywood fare. However, the company has brought in marketing consultant Paula Silver who worked on crossover hit My Big Fat Greek Wedding.
'This movie was made for a non-Indian audience - the average US viewer who has never seen an Indian film but may be curious,' says Hyperion Pictures India vice president Sidharth Jain. 'However we also have high expectations for the film in India where Salman is a huge star.'
Jain added that the film is being positioned as 'date movie' counter-programming against the summer blockbusters in the US.
Adlabs entered domestic Indian distribution in Jan 2007 with Guru and has since
handled the Indian release of Spider-Man 3 along with local films such as Black Friday, Bheja Fry and Anubhav Sinha's action thriller Cash which opened last weekend (Aug 3).
Upcoming releases include Sriram Raghavan's crime thriller Johnny Gaddaar and two films from Ram Gopal Varma - Ki Aag, which is a remake of Bollywood classic Sholay, and a sequel to Sarkar, Sarkarraaj.