Dutch distribution veteran Jean Heijl has joined independent outfit Moonlight Films from Indies Entertainment Group.

His move coincides with Moonlight opening a new distribution office near Amsterdam and a planned expansion of the number of titles it handles.

"With Jean Heijl on our team we believe we can be a serious player in the market with strong commercial product. Jean's years of experience and expertise will surely be of strong influence," said Charles van Droffelaar, president of Moonlight.

The company enjoyed major success with The Others but has not released a large volume since then. With the new distribution head and the new office it will now release John Travolta vehicle Basic in Belgium in July and in the Netherlands in late August. That will be followed by vampire action picture Underworld.

"We know that other companies are in trouble, but we hope to expand the number of films we handle from three or four per year to five or six and to handle slightly bigger, more commercial titles," said van Droffelaar. "We will be back in the market at Cannes, but our choices will always be carefully picked."

Heijl leaves Indies, one of the companies understood to be facing financial difficulties, after four and a half years. His previous experience was with studio groups, Warner Bros, Columbia TriStar and 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.

Other titles on the Moonlight slate include Morvern Callar, A Sound Of Thunder, The Exorcist 4, and local pictures The Interview by Theo van Gogh and Rudolf van de Berg's Het Woeden Der Gehele Wereld.