Nu Image has acquired effective control of First Look Studios in the wake of Henry Winterstern's recent departure as the latter company's co-chairman and chief executive officer.

The companies had been linked for some time and it was originally rumoured that First Look would acquire Avi Lerner, Danny Dimbort and Trevor Short's Nu Image.

As part of the transaction Nu Image has injected a substantial but undisclosed amount of capital into First Look through new holding company Nu Image FLS Investment, and restructured First Look's debt.

First Look will continue to operate as a domestic distributor, which gives Nu Image its first North American releasing vehicle and a fresh influx of 700 library titles. First Look Pictures head Ruth Vitale announced last week that she would step down on Apr 30.

It remained unclear at time of writing what will happen to First Look International, the ambitious foreign sales venture run by Stuart Ford, who recently opened a London office.

A spokesperson for First Look said the parties were discussing how to proceed. A statement said First Look's existing library of film and television product would be 'more efficiently represented in foreign markets by Nu Image's highly respected foreign sales organisation.'

First Look International's slate includes Larry Charles' Borat follow-up about institutionalised religion, the Tennessee Williams adaptation The Loss Of A Teardrop Diamond, and the true-life drama An American Crime, which recently premiered at Sundance.