UK distributor Revolver is launching a standalone production arm – Gunslinger – to develop, finance and produce feature films.

The new outfit already has a number of projects in development, the first of which, action thriller Shank, has just started shooting in London. Filmed entirely on location in south London, Shank is written by Paul Carter who is also producing alongside Revolver’s Nick Taussig.

The film, directed by Mo Ali, is set in a future London where the gap between rich and poor has grown to epic proportions and food has replaced drugs and guns as a priceless commodity. It tells the story of gang member Junior, who trades in food but tries to avoid territory disputes and violence. He is forced choose between his principals or revenge after one of his gang is killed.

The cast includes Adam Deacon, musician Ashley “Bashy” Thomas, Michael Socha, Kaya Scodelario, Jan Uddin, and Jennie Jacques.

Justin Marciano, Revolver chief executive, said: “We have been quietly developing film projects for some time now. The fact that we have started principal photography on the first project already shows that we have been busy building our slate over the last few months.

“Gunslinger allows us to do what many others in the industry can’t - by being in constant contact with the marketplace, we can essentially reverse engineer how we approach film production by delivering a product with the right sized budget to fit its market value.”