After 37 years distributing its product theatrically through Ster Kinekor in South Africa, 20th Century Fox is transferring its theatrical business to rival distributor/exhibitor Nu Metro from the 1 August 2002.

Nu Metro has handled the video distribution of Fox product since 1994 and the decision is seen as a move by the Studio to consolidate its Home Entertainment and Theatrical business under one distributor.

Michelle Hemphill, 20th Century Fox South Africa's representative says, "We are very positive about the South African Film market and see huge growth potential with the emerging market, and subsequently, a growth in attendances. The advantages of moving to Nu Metro are not only cost efficiencies, but also to provide more synergistic opportunities between the various divisions. Our move to Nu Metro will in no way influence our relationship with Ster-Kinekor Theatres. We will of course continue to supply product to them regardless of the size or potential of the film. Although Ster-Kinekor Theatres are the majority marketshare exhibitors in South Africa, this can vary from film to film, and from week to week. Once again, their marketshare will not affect our distribution to either exhibitor."

The last three pictures Ster-Kinekor will distribute are Star Wars EpisodeII (which opened on Friday 21 June, on 91 prints), Unfaithful and Joyride.