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Think of the angels...

`Charlie's Angels - 2 Full Throttle,' the sequel to the 2000 blockbuster hits Indian screens a week after its US release on July 4. Appu Singh, Regional Manager, South for Columbia Tristar talks about the significance of this first as well as the fun things CA2 has to offer in this exclusive interview.



FULL THROTTLE: The chases are big screen experiences.

THIS IS the year of sequels - each one of them as highly anticipated as the other. Starting with the baap of franchises, James Bond, 2003 has been rolling out sequels at a rapid clip. We had the second instalment of the Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, X-Men and the latest and most successful Matrix. And now we can get ready for the trendiest, the savviest and sexiest of them all, the second instalment of the ultimate chic flick Charlie's Angels - Full Throttle.

A kitschy paean to girl power, the film has Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore (one of the executive producers) and Lucy Liu reprise their roles as Natalie Cook, Dylan Sanders and Alex Munday respectively. Bernie Mac replaces Bill Murray as Bosley while Luke Wilson (Natalie's boyfriend Pete), Matt Le Blanc (Alex's boyfriend Jason) and villainous Thin Man reprise their roles. Demi Moore returns to screen after a six year break to play fallen angel Madison Lee.

Costumes are an important part of the film and Joseph G. Aulisi who dressed the angels the first time around returned for the sequel. "The look has evolved for the sequel," he explains. Cameron's character is still the California outdoorsy girl and in general totally into sportswear. Drew's Dylan has lost some of her flower child demeanour and has moved into a rock star mode while Lucy character remains the most international cosmopolitan of the three. The challenge was to give the clothes a fresh look and still be faithful to what we call the essence of Angels. To do this I switched the colour palette slightly using a lot of red, white and black."

For Madison, Aulisi designed clothes to give the impression "that she is enmeshed and slightly trapped, so I used layers of net on her costume."

Appu Singh, Regional Manager South, Columbia Tristar Films of India in an exclusive interview talks of what India and Hyderabad can look forward to from the angels.

How did Charlie's Angles (CA) fare? What was its USP?

Charlie's Angels had grossed over 400 million US $ overseas. Charlie's Angels was released in November 2000, with a $40 million opening weekend that still holds the record for the best debut by a first time director.

In India the movie was a smash hit- the business generated was worth Rs. 8 crores.

Inspired by the phenomenally popular television series, Charlie's Angels brought in both the audience that remembered the series and an entire new generation that thrives on action, glamour and adventure.

When `Spiderman' was released three weeks after its international release, it was a first and now `Charlie's Angels 2' (CA2) is being released a week after its international release -- can you tell us more about this phenomenon?

The whole idea behind this is to provide the Indian audience a chance to watch the film as close to the US release date. Further the US hype has been transmitted to India, (the media has already reported the International premiere and about the stars from time to time), thanks to globalisation. From the distribution perspective, it makes sense to capitalise on the media hype and expectations as we are looking at translating this buzz into bookings.

Films have a short shelf life; audiences love to watch films fresh and new- this way we are bringing the angels to India within a week of the action exploding in US.

Is the Indian market now being looked on par with south Asia? Will we have the stars coming to India for premiers like they do in Japan?



CHIC FLICK: Cameron Diaz, Drew Barrymore and Lucy Liu.

India as a market is growing. Audiences here have their own preferences. People want to go to theatres and watch films. This trend is encouraging and we feel that India has great potential.

Stars coming to India for premiers are still a little far off, but with promising responses from the market we do feel that this can come true.

Can we look at simultaneous worldwide releases?

Charlie's Angels Full Throttle is a step in this direction- being the first film to be released within a week of the US Release, we need to wait and watch the industry reactions.

Is the film going to be dubbed in Telugu? If yes, what is it going to be called?

Charlie's Angels will be dubbed in Telugu as Charlie's Angels 2. The tag line reads - Andala Bhamala Aavagaalu.

Is dubbing detrimental to the success of the film?

The idea of dubbing a film is to take it to the masses. A film like Charlie's Angels 2 is a value for money film. With High-octane action, glamorous girls, visually stunning stunts, it can easily be a well-made Telugu or Tamil film. The theme is universal; the gals take on the bad guys!

What is the USP of `CA2?'

This is a movie that has glamour, sex appeal, dancing, great action all mixed together - in short CA2 is a whirlwind of creative energy. The audience going for the film knows that they are really going to be entertained!

The music of `CA' was phenomenal -- what about `CA2'?

John Houlihan oversaw the music for Charlie's Angels and its soundtrack album sold over three million copies worldwide. He has supervised the music for CA2.

Edward Shearmur has provided some breakthrough music in CA2.

Can you tell us something about the action sequences in the film?

The fight sequences in CA2 are more gruelling with the angels doing many of their own stunts. `The Master' Cheung-Yan Yuen, the Hong Kong fight choreographer who instructed the three actresses in martial arts and wire action for the first part, has re-created the magic by bringing together more intense, exciting and dynamic fight scenes.

Motorcycles and surfing are an integral part of the film. The motocross scenes with the angels flying a hundred feet out and 40 feet above the ground were coordinated by the director McG and veteran stunt coordinator /2nd unit director Mic Rodgers.

The action, in short needs to be seen on big screen to be believed - it is breath taking.

What is the Indian market (Hyderabad in particular) reaction to chic flicks?

Chic flicks fare well in a market like Hyderabad. High voltage action, glamour, sex appeal are ingredients of a good value for money film!

What are the expectations of `CA2?'

CA2 stands out as the most anticipated action blockbuster of the year. We expect this sequel to be another smash hit!

How many theatres is the movie being released in?

The film will roll out with more than 150 prints and hence the markets covered will be the top cities and top urban towns for the English version.

Would a wide release kill the movie?

A wide release ensures that the film will open in all major cities simultaneously and all cinemagoers will get an opportunity to watch the action.

Any promotions planned?

We have a huge campaign that is rolling out and this is also being supported by a number of brands - Airtel, MTV, Mirchi, Seagrams, Red Bull are some of the big brands that are associating with the film.

The film is being also supported by a big television and outdoor campaign and huge number of activities in the theatre. What can Hyderabad look forward to vis a vis promotions?

The Angels have already entered the city of Hyderabad. Our outdoors have been splashed across different parts of the city informing the arrival of the angels on screens on July 4.

MINI ANTHIKAD-CHHIBBER

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