Abu Dhabi-backed ‘Marigold Hotel’ movie set for a sequel

Retirement comedy earned US$130m worldwide from a budget of just US$10m

The Abu Dhabi-backed movie ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ is set to be followed by a sequel after the sleeper hit, made on a budget of us$10m, earned around US$130m worldwide and was one of the most profitable movies of 2012.

The film was financed and presented by the Participant Media and Image Nation, in association with Fox Searchlight, which distributed the film worldwide.

"Through our international partnerships, Image Nation aims to make films that transcend borders and resonate with people regardless of age or culture," Michael Garin, CEO of Image Nation, said of the film.

According to a report by US-based entertainment website Vulture.com, screenwriter Ol Parker is set to deliver a script outline for the sequel to Fox Searchlight within the next few weeks.

The original film told the story of a group of British retirees who decide to "outsource" their retirement to less expensive and seemingly exotic India.

Many of the cast from the original, which included veteran actors Judi Dench, Tom Wilkinson, Bill Nighy, Penelope Wilton and Maggie Smith, are reportedly eager to return, while Helen Mirren and Colin Firth are rumoured to be joining the cast for the sequel.

Many Abu Dhabi-backed films had a good year at the box office, with thriller Contagion and Oscar-winning The Help both grossing over US$200m worldwide.

In addition, Hollywood blockbusters Ghost Rider - Spirit of Vengeance and Men in Black 3 earned US$132m and US$624m respectively and were both partially funded by Abu Dhabi’s Image Nation.

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