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Ex-EMI CEO launches film group

Former EMI chairman and CEO Eric Luciano Nicoli is teaming with William Lewis, John Stanley and Dean Goldberg to launch finance and production outfit Wentworth Media and Arts in Cannes.

Based in London, the partnership, backed by UK private equity sources aims to produce, develop, distribute and fund films, TV, social media, computer games, CGI animation, theatre, live entertainment and education and publishing, as well as emerging technologies.

The group has taken a stake in newly minted sales company, Filmagine, headed by veteran film financier Beau Rogers and formed in partnership with Morris Ruskin’s Shoreline Entertainment.

WMA and Filmagine are jointly developing rom-com The Raven of St. James’s Park, written by Ocean Palmer, about a royal coachman and an immigrant waitress. The company plans to back 3-4 features below £10m per year.

On the TV slate, and currently in production, is a six-part TV music documentary series called Time of Our Lives about major concept albums.

Nicoli said: “We believe content, in all forms, is increasing in value around the world. The strategically vetted approach to financing new films and properties is appealing to us. We’re aligning high quality content with funding and business execution in a way that can maximize the exploitation and commercialization of that content for the content owner, distributor, investor and WMA alike.”

Lewis added: “WMA has been created to offer a comprehensive range of services to the media and entertainment industry. We provide a broad set of capabilities, resources, relationships, skillsets and services for each project or piece of content the company decides to pursue. There are no set restrictions on how or where capital is allocated, which allows for maximum flexibility in sourcing projects and material and collaborating with various partners to build a diverse slate.”

Prior to his tenure at EMI, Nicoli was non-executive chairman of HMV Group, The Tussauds Group and Vue Entertainment.

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