Speaking at the 2010 Screen Film Summit in London, Olivier Courson, CEO of StudioCanal, said the company’s main focus going forward would be on the production of new French and UK productions (via its UK subsidiary Optimum).
“Today we need to have a great bond between production and distribution. To have distributors involved in the production side of things is very interesting. The strong links are important. That’s part of the reason we bought Optimum.” [StudioCanal struck a deal for the UK distributor in 2006.]
“For us, the main ambition is not to be a huge network across 10 or so countries but to have a balance between direct operation, sales and production in UK, France and US.”
While discussing upcoming StudioCanal co-production remakes of Cliffhanger and Escape From New York, Courson mentioned that the company is also developing a “reimagining” of The Third Man, the 1949 classic written by Graham Greene and directed by Carol Reed.
Courson was upbeat about the prospects of some of StudioCanal’s upcoming titles. He said that there had been strong international sales interest in Rowan Joffe’s British drama Brighton Rock (which premiered in Toronto) and that he was highly impressed with a recent cut he had seen of Joe Cornish’s urban sci-fi comedy Attack The Block.
“There is a huge reservoir of talent in UK, which can travel. Rowan Joffe is a huge talent, for example. There is a huge international value to Brighton Rock.”
Courson said that StudioCanal had no plans to move into US distribution and said that he considers the US “a partner rather than a rival”.
Courson was speaking to about 200 delegates at the annual Screen Film Summit, which also includes talks by Culture Minister Ed Vaizey (that video will be posted on ScreenDaily tonight) and a host of top UK distributors, financiers and producers.