Russia has a thriving independent distribution sector which is in the market for international films of all stripes.

Caravella DDC

Who to know: Mila Rozanova, head of distribution

The lowdown: Caravella DDC specialises in independent international 3D films. Its upcoming slate includes UK family film Horrid Henry 3D, to be released this summer, the Roland Emmerich-produced German sci-fi title 2016: Das Ende Der Nacht and Spanish animation Tad, The Lost Explorer. The company does not handle many Russian films.

Contact: (7) 495 254 12 04;


Who to know: Gevorg Nersisyan, general director

The lowdown: Set up in 1992, Paradise is now one of Russia’s oldest production and distribution companies. It specialises in US indies such as recent pick-ups the romantic comedy Something Borrowed, starring Kate Hudson, and spy thriller Fair Game, starring Naomi Watts and Sean Penn, both from Summit, as well as Nu Image/Millennium’s action movie Conan The Barbarian. Paradise was instrumental in introducing Russian audiences to the early films of Pedro Almodovar, Emir Kusturica, Woody Allen and Martin Scorsese.

Contact: (7) 495 916 92 20;

Top Film

Who to know: Makar Kozhukhov, general director

The lowdown: Top Film concentrates on buying commercial independent films. Its successful releases this year to date include Sanctum ($8.6m) and Insidious ($3.9m). It also enjoyed a busy Cannes, buying Stefan Ruzowitzky’s Blackbird, starring Eric Bana and Olivia Wilde from StudioCanal, and pre-buying the comedy The Chef, starring Jean Reno, and the completed French swashbuckler Philibert, both from Gaumont. It also picked up US horror film Spectre from IM Global.

Contact: (7) 495 228 70 51;

Central Partnership Sales house

Who to know: Armen Dishdishyan

The lowdown: Central Partnership Sales House (CPSH) is the releasing arm of one of Russia’s leading indie production and distribution companies. Since 2009, it has released all Paramount Pictures International titles in Russia and the CIS (excluding Ukraine). It also buys a wide range of titles — from auteur-driven titles such as Woody Allen’s Midnight In Paris and Lars von Trier’s Melancholia to more commercial fare such as Ghost Rider: Spirit Of Vengeance — travelling regularly to major international festivals. CPSH works closely with the major Russian TV channels to promote its releases. Former CPSH CEO Mark Lolo recently stepped up to become president of Central Partnership following the departure of company founder Ruben Dishdishyan. Lolo has pledged to create new distribution channels. His permanent successor at CPSH has yet to be announced.

Contact: (7) 495 777 49 52;


Who to know: Tigran Dokhalov, CEO

The lowdown: West is one of Russia’s largest independent distribution companies, focusing on US independent titles, particularly teen comedies and horror films. It also buys arthouse offerings such as Terrence Malick’s Cannes Palme d’Or-winner The Tree Of Life. West attends all the major festivals, including Cannes, Berlin and Toronto.

Contact: (7) 495 640 27 51;


Who to know: Sergei Sorochkin, general director; Marina Zhukova, distribution department.

The lowdown: The Luxor group combines distribution, exhibition and animation production outfits. The distribution branch is a regular at international film festivals and markets and is renowned for its impressive marketing and advertising campaigns. In addition to US films such as The Lincoln Lawyer and recent pick-up Reign Of Blood, a vampire thriller, the company pays particular attention to European and Asian films. Upcoming releases include Chinese animation Legend Of The Rabbit and Vincenzo Natali’s Neuromancer.

Contact: (7) 495 6311231