Ending months of speculation, Miramax Films has confirmed a major shake-up of the London-based team responsible for implementing its production and acquisitions activities across Europe.

New York-based development chief Colin Vaines will head the London-based operation as executive vice-president of European production and development. Former UK-based chief Allon Reich is joining UK National Lottery franchise DNA Films.

Acquisitions are now spearheaded out of London by Maeva Gatineau with a team including Chiara Trento and Emil Elmer. Former London-based head of acquisitions Elizabeth Dreyer stepped down last month when she re-located to Paris. Miramax's long-serving senior vice president of acquisitions and co-productions Teresa Moneo is, for the present at least, staying with the company.

The shifts come after months of speculation over the future of Miramax's London operation, which in June saw the departure of development head Christian Colson to join Celador Films.

"All I can say for now is that we are committed to a range of films across Europe through a mixture of acquisitions and development work, as well as production," Vaines told Screen International.

Vaines, closely involved on Gangs Of New York, will also work on US productions shooting in the UK and with UK filmmakers involved with Miramax's US titles. The well-liked British executive, formerly head of development at UK lottery franchise The Film Consortium, will report to executive vice-president of development Europe Julie Goldstein and co-president of production Meryl Postner.

Further changes recently saw Rick Sands promoted to chief operating officer, increasing his international role in areas such as production finance.

Separately, Reich confirmed he will be a partner in DNA, which this weekend scored a hit in the UK with Danny Boyle's sci-fi 28 Days Later. The film's success is expected to help talks with its backer Fox Searchlight about a joint venture.

"My departure led to people coming up and asking if Miramax is closing its London office," Reich said. "Harvey loves UK movies, he's just got the BFI Fellowship, and he's a real Anglophile. I don't think me leaving signalled anything. Miramax will continue to be very active."