Independent film producersJeffrey Sneller (The Adventures of Pinocchio) and Charles Fries have formed home entertainmentdistribution company Santa Barbara Home Video, a distribution subsidiary ofSanta Barbara Filmed-Entertainment that they say will give film-makers greateropportunity to participate in the marketing of their films.

Santa Barbara Home Videowill distribute its own productions as well as acquisitions, with an emphasison family titles. The company is currently releasing Southern Cross, starring Esai Morales and Valentina Vargas, and ForHire, starring Rob Lowe and MichaelIronside, ahead of the Apr 15 release of the Sneller-Raju Patel produced TheNew Adventures Of Pinocchio.

The combination live-action,puppetry and CGI animation picture stars Martin Landau as Geppetto and is asequel to the Sneller-Patel produced New Line theatrical release, TheAdventures of Pinocchio, whichpremiered on HBO Family in early February.

'Santa Barbara HomeVideo puts Charles and I in control of the marketing and the distribution. Weproduce, finance, and distribute, both theatrically and on video so that ourrewards rise and fall on our efforts,' Sneller said in a statement.'We are in the position to give the product its best opportunity, and unlikethe majors, we have both money and time, so we are able to put a lot of careinto the making and marketing of our pictures.'

Santa BarbaraFilmed-Entertainment is currently co-producing the feature film Doctor Lopez in the fourth quarter of 2003 in association withAndrew Stevens' Powerhouse Entertainment. Santa Barbara FilmedEntertainment, own the rights to the film, which is based on the Elizabethannovel and screen story by Elliott Baker and screenplay by Sherry Mills.