Babelsberg's new owners have appointed Henning Molfenter asmanaging director of Studio Babelsberg Motion Pictures (SBMP).

It is the first major personnel decision made by CarlWoebcken and Christoph Fisser since they officially took over the German studiosfrom Vivendi Universal on September 1.

Molfenter replaces Thierry Potok, who attempted anunsuccessful management buyout of the studio earlier year.

Speaking at the weekend, Molfenter said he intended tocontinue to pursue the strategy of attracting international projects as well aslocal German ones to use the facilities at the Babelsberg studios.

After working for many years in the US, Molfenter joinedStudio Babelsberg in 2001 as the executive producer responsible for productionservices on Roman Polanski's Oscar-winning The Pianist. In summer 2003, he co-ordinated the shooting of AroundThe World In 80 Days in the Berlin andBrandenburg region and was then appointed SBMP's Head of Production by the thenmanaging director Thierry Potok in September 2003.

Since then, Molfenter has been involved in coordinatingproduction services for Paul Greengrass' The Bourne Supremacy, Fernando Mereilles' The Constant Gardener and Karyn Kusuma's Aeon Flux which began shooting again last week afterproduction was halted by lead actress Charlize Theron's stunt injury in August.

Complementing Molfenter on the local level is SBMPproduction executive Udo Happel.