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Warner be startin' somethin'

Blaise Fernandes, MD, Warner Brothers, India talks about the logistics of the global release of `The Matrix Revolutions'



Photo: A. Roy Chowdhury

BY NOW the world and its wife knows about the global release of the final episode of The Matrix franchise, Matrix Revolutions. Come 7.30 pm on November 5 and we would know the fate of Neo and gang with the rest of the world - 60 countries to be precise including 6 am in Los Angeles, 9 am in New York, 2 pm in London, 5 pm in Moscow and 11 pm Tokyo.

"This is the first time in history that India is part of a simultaneous worldwide release," Blaise Fernandes Managing Director Warner Brothers said. "India is an important market. Matrix did Rs. 6 crore and Reloaded the second instalment did Rs. 12 crore." Andhra Pradesh forms a sizeable chunk as is obvious from the fact that the film has been dubbed into Telugu apart from Hindi and Tamil.

Fernandes admits supplying prints for 150 centres (22 of which are in AP) was a "logistical nightmare but we have a super team who have pulled it off." The main reasons for the global release according to Fernandes are to "curb piracy and so that fans get to know the story at the same time."

While there are no plans for other simultaneous releases, there are a host of "big films from the Warner stable" including The Last Samurai starring a certain Mr Tom Cruise, which would be released in the US in December. We can get to feast our eyes on Cruise in Samurai outfits sometime in January.

The final episode of the Lord of the Rings trilogy - The Coming of the King is being released in the US on December 17 but we will get to see Aragon and company only in mid February. "The dating of a film is a local decision," Fernandes explained. "For instance the third edition of Harry Potter, The Prisoner of Azkaban will have a summer release in the US but we will release during Diwali which is a good time for family movies."

Fernandes commented that Warner Brothers is not new to the concept of stars attending premiers, "We had Steven Seagal for the opening of Under Siege II and Oliver Stone for JFK. It depends on the stars' engagements as well."

And so while we wonder about the real time release, do not forget to grab those tickets and turn up togged in your Matrix finery. Welcome to the real world through the looking glass of the Wachowski Brothers.

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