Till now, all movies under the YRF banner were produced by the production house's top honcho, Aditya Chopra, son of Yash Chopra. Starting this year, YRF will make films produced by people other than Chopra. They already have Maneesh Sharma, an old hand at YRF, who will produce Dum Laga Ke Haisha, directed by Sharat Katariya and starring Ayushman Khurrana. He is expected to produce two other movies.
YRF will be looking for two more in-house producers this year. The move could help almost double the number of movies it can produce in a year. Currently, it makes 10-12 films a year under its banner; all are produced by Aditya Chopra. He conceives the movie, prepares the budget, arranges the financing, hires the director and oversees production and distribution. Getting more in-house directors would mean more films being produced each year.
Having a sole producer isn’t at all unusual for Bollywood houses. Disney-UTV, with many blockbusters, has Siddharth Roy Kapur as the only producer. In Red Chillies Entertainment, Shah Rukh Khan’s wife, Gauri Khan, is the only producer. In television, though, Balaji Telefilms has started a trend through its subsidiary, BOLT Media, in which in-house producers have been created who oversee the smaller serials and projects; Ektaa Kapoor produces the bigger serials.
Maneesh Sharma has been with YRF since 2006. He’s been an assistant director on films such as Fanaa, Aaja Nachle and Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi. He made his directorial debut with Ranveer Singh and the Anushka Sharma-starrer Band Baaja Barat. He also directed the duo’s next film, Ladies v/s Ricky Bahl, and the 2013 hit, Shuddh Desi Romance, featuring Parineeti Chopra and Sushant Singh Rajput.
The move will give YRF the opportunity to dabble in various genres, too, as in-house producers would be expected to be able to carve niches for themselves over time.
From the successful movies of 2013, there is appetite for all types of content in the Indian market and a production house with varied content to offer will be in a better position to monetise its investments.