David Linde has unveiled a network of international output deals with distributors including Entertainment One, Tele Munchen and Nordisk Film and confirmed that Reliance Entertainment will back his new production and financing venture.
Universal Pictures, of which Linde was previously co-chairman, will have first option to co-finance projects from the new company and to distribute them in the US and “other significant international territories,” according to a statement from Linde.
Films not distributed in the US by Universal will be produced and distributed by Linde with other studios. Reliance will distribute the films in India.
“Our company is designed in response to a changing world,” said Linde of his new, as yet unnamed venture. “We have the opportunity to tap into the global industry’s desire for films while at the same time build a business that offers opportunities to our creative partners by harnessing both traditional means of distribution as well as new technologies, platforms and markets. Reliance has already proven itself a great partner and we look forward to working with them as we enter this new world.”
Linde also named Tory Metzger, formerly president of MRC film group, as the new company’s president of production, and Adam Rymer, most recently SVP of digital platforms at Universal Pictures, as COO.
The new company’s output deal with Entertainment One (eOne) will cover Canada, the UK and Benelux. An eOne statement said the company will handle 2-4 Linde films a year in all media, with the first expected to be delivered in 2012.
Tele Munchen Group will distribute in Germany, Austria and parts of Switzerland, Luxembourg and Liechtenstein. The Nordisk deal covers Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Iceland.
Other output deals have been signed with Italia Films for the Middle East, Greece and Turkey, Revolutionary Releasing for Eastern Europe excluding Russia and Sun Distribution for Latin America.
Linde’s company becomes the latest in a string of Hollywood ventures for Reliance Entertainment, the media and entertainment arm of India’s giant Reliance Group. Reliance is a partner in DreamWorks Studios, owns international sales company IM Global and has development deals with Imagine Entertainment, Playtone Productions, George Clooney’s Smokehouse, Brad Pitt’s Plan B and Brett Ratner’s Rat Entertainment.