Sahara Percept’s Hanuman to make comic book debut

One of the most significant milestones of Indian animation, Hanuman, is also a great case study for how creators of original content can tap into revenue streams. Hanuman the superstar of the blockbuster animated IP is now also going to feature in comics that are being published by Delhi based Diamond Books Publication. Priced at Rs 35/-, the Hanuman series of comics will launch next week under its kids sub brand Junior Diamond and shall follow the same storyline as the movie. Initially the series will be published in Hindi, English, Bengali, Marathi, Gujarati and Kannada and followed by four other languages later on. Speaking to Animation ‘xpress Percept Picture Company COO Mahesh Ramanathan shared, “Percept Picture Company is extending the universality in appeal of “Baby Hanuman” to more & more interactive platforms for children. Also we are confident that “Hanuman” would achieve a similar transformation in publishing industry like what it achieved for the animation industry.Percept Picture Company is glad to licence “Hanuman” to Diamond Books and hope that they would leverage their extensive distribution reach to keep Bajrangbali alive in the hearts & minds of millions of Indian children” Manish Verma, Director, Diamond Books Publication shared, “We are extremely pleased to launch comics around the Blockbuster Hanuman. We will draw on our 2000 strong distributor network across the country to give the comics maximum reach. Initially we are releasing two lakh copies and are targeting five lakh copies in mid to long term” “Media collaboration is the future. In future movies and comics should go hand in hand in hand as now the promotion networks are wide enough to promote the merchandise and the brands. We believe that this should happen more often and we are open to the same.” He added. The project took off three months ago and involved a production team of 25. The illustrations for the comics have been done by Illustrated Orchids. Diamond Books Publication is part of the Diamond Pocket Books Pvt. Ltd. Group which was established in 1975. The group was earlier associated with Diamond Comics which is famous for its Chacha Chaudhary series and has been a separate entity since the past five years. Commenting upon the need for Indian comic books to get in sync with today’s tastes, Verma commented, “The comics business has gone into recession for the past 7-8 years with sales dwindling as well. This might be because of the fact that products which are available in the market have not actually tuned themselves to the present scenario in terms of content and art. Therefore, we need to upgrade our content and launch new brands and products in this category all over the world. Children’s books have grown and become immensely popular and we hope that comics would also grow in the same manner.” Percept Picture company is also working on creating Baby Hanuman plastic toys with Plastech Toys and soft toys with HANUNG Toys. “We have also entered into similar licence arrangements for merchandise of “Hanuman” and have received exceptional repeat demand across geographies in India.”Hanuman” is set to establish new benchmarks and become a case study in sale of legal merchandise in India already clocking in over Rs.1.5 cr in sales at primary level” said Ramanathan. “Percept Picture Company’s strong partner selection and management has significantly contributed to the continuing interest in “Hanuman” merchandise and the growing license arrangements the Company is signing everyday with new partners” he concluded.