Toronto-based distributors Mongrel Media and Capri Releasing have entered into a national co-distribution agreement that will see Mongrel handling Capri's theatrical releases going forward as well as DVD.

The deal follows the departure earlier this year of Capri Releasing vice-president Robin Smith.

Mongrel president Hussain Amarshi told Screen International that the deal was not contractual but an agreement in principal. Capri, he said, would continue to acquire films and be involved in shaping the marketing plans but 'we will be booking the films.' Amarshi compared the relationship with that of Quebec distributor Remstar and Alliance Atlantis MPD.

Capri Films president Gabriella Martinelli said her company's releasing arm will continue to focus on acquisitions and working with producers in developing projects. Robin Crumley replaced Smith as vice-president of Capri Releasing.

The first film to be released through the new Mongrel-Capri scheme will be Sarah Polley's Away From Her, which opens in major cities on May 4. Subsequent titles include Roberto Faenza's Come Into The Light; Marcelo Gomes's Cinema, Aspirins & Vultures; Robert Duvall's Angelo My Love, The Quay Brothers' The Piano Tuner of Earthquakes and Laurie Lynd's Breakfast With Scott.

Mongrel has a Canadian sub-distribution deal with Sony Pictures Classics for theatrical and all ancillary rights save DVD. Amarshi said the addition of the Capri titles will increase Mongrel's 2007 release slate to approximately 35 to 40 titles.