Mumbai: Anurag Kashyap, Madhu Mantena, Vikramaditya Motwane and Vikas Bahl, four filmmakers had formed banner Phantom Films in 2013 with Lootera being their first project. As the film went on to become a hit, there was no looking back for them. After that the four went on to give some back to back hits like Queen, Masan Udata Punjab and others.
But on October 6, Anurag Kashyap announced that Phantom Films have been dissolved. The day before, a former employee’s claims of facing sexual harassment from Queen director and Phantom co-founder Vikas Bahl was published by the Huffington Post.
In 2015, the company entered a 50-50 joint venture with Anil Ambani’s Reliance Entertainment to develop and produce five to six films every year, distribute them in India and abroad, and to also syndicate rights from their combined library.
The producers also had a deal with Graphic India and Stan Lee’s POW Entertainment to develop Lee’s Chakra the Invincible, a live action theatrical film version of Lee’s animated superhero property, to be directed by Motwane.
Motwane had also confirmed that Phantom is working on a horror-specific slate with Blumhouse Productions and Ivanhoe Pictures this year and that they have already gone into production with the respective films, and they are producing the said projects at the moment for sure.
Apart from this, the production house was to produce Ranveer Singh’s 84, Abhishek Bachchan and Aishwarya Rai Bachchan’s Gulab Jamun. While there is a possibility that Anurag might go ahead and produce Gulab Jamun on his own as he announced that all four of them will be individually working on different projects.
However, their recent series Sacred Games which was aired on Netflix and became a hit, is suppose to come back with a second season. The first season starred Nawazuddin Siddiqui, Saif Ali Khan, Radhika Apte and others, and was directed by Anurag Kashyap and Vikramaditya Motwane and the second season was to be directed by Anurag and Neeraj Ghewan.
While the future of these projects hang in the air, Netflix’s spokesperson says, “At this time we are evaluating options on the path forward.”
Phantom Films, has acquired the rights of Krishna Udayasankar’s book – ‘Immortal’ from Hachette India. The production house planned to develop the project as a trilogy on Ashwathama in a modern context.