In the run-up to the AFM,voracious new Dutch and Belgian-based outfit Benelux Film Distributors (BFD),is hoovering up product. Along with titles already announced, the company hasconfirmed it will be releasing Young Hannibal: Behind The Mask, The LastMogul, Hurricane Chasers, The Life And Death Of Bobby Z, Running Scared and The Last Hangman.

A joint venture betweenDutch FilmWorks, Inspire Pictures and Belgian company Lumiere, BFD was createdin late October and opens for business officially on January 1st2006. The company aims to achieve a market share of between 5 and 10% inBenelux in its first year. "We will not be as big as UIP or Buena Vista but onthe independent level, we will be in the top three," Dutch FilmWorks bossWillem Pruijssers told Screen International. "Our aim is to create a bigindependent theatrical distributor with power in marketings and booking."

The company will handletheatrically films picked up by the three partners together or individually, aswell as features from other parties. It aims to acquire both mainstreamcommercial fare and local arthouse titles. "A few titles will be acquired byall three parties, a larger slice will be acquired by Dutch FilmWorks andInspire simply because our companies are a little bigger than Lumiere, and 30%to 40% of the titles will be acquired separately from each other," Pruijssersexplained.