Entertainment One, the newest player on the Canadian film distribution scene, is acquiring Montreal-based distributor Seville Pictures, the company announced today.

The move is the first Canadian foray in an ambitious global releasing strategy of Entertainment One Film Entertainment president Patrice Theroux, who launched the division last month.

Speaking to Screendaily, Theroux said Seville fits his shopping list precisely: an established, well-managed distribution business with growth potential. 'Seville does many things well but they had reached their limit through lack of capital,' he said.

Of Seville co-founders and co-presidents David Reckziegel and John Hamilton, who will remain with the company, Theroux remarked the duo have been 'disciplined in their ambitions' and would now have the latitude to expand those ambitions. He said Seville will add a minimum of 24 titles to its release slate.

Theroux also pointed to Seville's 500-title library as a lure, particularly the 100 titles for which Seville holds worldwide rights, including Denys Arcand's The Decline Of The American Empire.

'We'll be able to release them through our other distribution assets.' On July 5, the company completed its acquisition of UK-based distributor Contender Entertainment Group, set to expand from its home video base into theatrical in the coming months. As well, the company recently acquired US independent music label Koch Entertainment with plans to expand into video distribution in the US.

As to the shopping list, Theroux is just getting started. He said Entertainment One, Canada's largest home entertainment wholesaler with 2006 revenue of $630m, is looking to acquire other Canadian filmed entertainment assets.

Theroux said the Seville name will remain in place for the timebeing. 'We'll look at the branding globally.'