This is Jeff Bayer, and I don't update this site very often. If you'd like to listen to my current movie podcast you can find it at MovieBS.com.

Slumdog Millionaire studio joins forces with Shah Rukh Khan

Bollywood has a little boost thanks to Slumdog Millionaire respect. Heck, even Chris Kattan is tapping into it with Bollywood Hero on IFC. I had never heard of Fox STAR Studios. Not even when Slumbdog was winning awards ... but now it appears the biggest name in the Bollywood business - Shah Rukh Khan - is joining the team.

Here's the news release.

MUMBAI (August 6, 2009) __ Fox STAR Studios, a pan-Asian joint venture between Twentieth Century Fox and STAR, today announced a groundbreaking deal with SHAH RUKH KHAN, Bollywood’s most successful movie star, and director KARAN JOHAR (“K3G,” “KANK”), to finance and distribute “My Name is Khan.”

The partnership on “My Name Is Khan” follows Fox STAR Studios’ successful release of “Slumdog Millionaire” in India earlier this year. Fox STAR Studios will market and distribute the film in India and leverage the strength of Fox’s theatrical distribution network worldwide. Fox Searchlight Pictures – which marketed and distributed “Slumdog Millionaire” in the U.S. to tremendous box office results and eight Academy Awards®, including Best Picture – will release the film in the United States ; while Twentieth Century Fox International will distribute outside of India and the U.S.

“For us it was important to find a partner who is like minded, has a similar vision and the capability to take Indian cinema to international markets,” said Karan Johar from Los Angeles. “This movie is essentially about human emotions that are relevant to people across the world, and I am happy that audiences unfamiliar with these films will get a chance to see what Indian cinema has to offer to the world.”

“STAR has had a long and enviable relationship with both Karan and Shah Rukh that goes back many years.No other media group can claim such a privileged relationship with two so big entertainment icons .Since STAR has now entered the business of movies,it is only natural for us to extend this relationship to movies .I am confident that MNK is a first in a long series of compelling movie entertainment that this relationship will deliver,” said Star India CEO, Uday Shankar.

“My Name is Khan” examines how the life of a Muslim man from India (Shah Rukh Khan) living in San Francisco embarks on a remarkable journey across the United States, inspiring people and inviting debate, creating an accidental revolution.

The film reunites Shah Rukh Khan – named by Time magazine as “the world’s biggest movie star” - with his frequent onscreen paramour, Kajol, who in “My Name is Khan,” plays his wife. They have previously starred in five films together including Kuch Kuch Hota Hai,Dilwale Dulhaniya Le Jayenge,all of which were blockbuster hits.

“My Name is Khan” also marks a re-teaming of Karan Johar and Shah Rukh Khan, who most recently collaborated three years ago on the hit, “Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna.” Over the years, Karan and Shahrukh have enjoyed an unbelievable run at the box office, working together on such hit films as Kabhi Alvida Na Kehna,Kal Ho Na Ho and Kabhi Khushi Kabhi Gham – all of which were successful internationally, as well.

“We are extremely proud of this collaboration, which reflects our ongoing commitment to partner with the best filmmakers in the world,” said Jim Gianopulos, Chairman and CEO, Fox Filmed Entertainment. "My Name is Khan"is a powerful, emotional journey that will cross borders and cultures and enthrall audiences all over the world. Karan and Shah Rukh have a brilliant vision for the film, and we’re thrilled to combine their enormous talent with our global commitment to its success in 2010.”

Vijay Singh, CEO Fox STAR Studios India who has spearheaded the deal said,” Karan and Sharukh have been the most successful combination in Bollywood, and we are delighted to be working together on ‘My Name is Khan.’ This relationship will help us further build the FoxSTAR presence in India, and provide an opportunity to demonstrate our marketing and distribution capabilities. ”

The Boys are Back - Trailer

The Soloist - Blu-ray