German film and TV sales player Beta Film used MIP-TV to complete another deal on its hit comedy Manitou's Shoe (Der Schuh Des Manitou). The film was sold in an all rights deal to SPO for Japan.
'We tend not to sell our films in package deals and instead handle and support each as an individual property. Having struck the deal with SPO, we will now help them secure the Japanese TV sales that they want,' said Jens Richter, Beta's managing director. 'As part of a large company we have a wide reach and are able to support our clients.' SPO will give Manitou a theatrical release in June.
Beta typically handles its feature films through Beta Cinema for a period of 12-16 months before they move to Beta Film. The deal with SPO brings to a remarkable 24 the number of territory deals on the German-language comedy.
In its home market the film by Michael 'Bully' Herbig sold a record-breaking 11.6 million tickets.
Beta comprises part of the rights management operations expected to be bought by Saban Entertainment as part of a deal unveiled last week to take over the assets of Kirch Media. Richter said that he expects Saban's arrival to inject new energy - and presumably cash - into the business. 'Rights trading is a business they know well,' he said. Beta owns some 15,000 hours of international programme rights, including 1,500 features and TV movies. It also represents a further 2,000 hours of third party rights.
Unveiling the group's latest line-up at Beta's biannual brunch, Richter said that its slate had diversified. More emphasis has been on family entertainment at the expense of action and violence.