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HB FILMS/MAIDEN VOYAGE PICTURES PACT WITH FILM AND MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT

// 7th of October, 2008

HB FILMS/MAIDEN VOYAGE PICTURES PACT WITH FILM AND MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT IN A DISTRIBUTION VENTURE TO RELEASE A DOZEN F&ME CO-PRODUCTION TITLES . FIRST FILMS SLATED FOR NOVEMBER THIS YEAR.

London: London-based film distributor HB FILMS and leading UK independent film production house Film and Music Entertainment (F&ME) have joined forces to release a slate of F&ME’s co-productions as well as third party acquisitions from their European and US production partners. Initial films to be released in 2008 include a re-release of Milcho Manchevski’s Academy Award Nominated and Venice winner Before the Rain and Danish thriller Murk written by Thomas Jensen.

HB’s team are responsible for innovative releases such as Gillo Pontecorvo’s Battle of Algiers, Alex de la Iglesias’ La Comunidad, Davide Marengo’s Nightbus and Jaquin Oristrell’s Unconscious through its theatrical division Maiden Voyage Pictures.

"Last year was a very productive one for us and also has become crucial for independent producers to widen their options and to secure a guaranteed theatrical distribution, to drive the DVD/VOD and TV sales" says F&ME producer and managing director, Mike Downey, " There is increased pressure to secure solid distribution by both major institutions and co-production partners and by establishing this distribution agreement with the very talented team at HB films, we have found a very progressive outlet for our international co-productions."

On the documentary front, HB/Fame are also in talks for the distribution of Mareike Schomerus’ Sudan oil documentary Beneath the Surface..

"We want to democratize film distribution, bringing films from around the world to
new audiences in ways that fit with their lifestyle and fast-evolving way of thinking. We are about diverse films, innovative distribution and easy access" says HB principal Bjorn Ricketts. "By joining forces with F&ME we are acquiring a catalogue of European films, by some of the most significant independent directors of our time."

Other titles in the package include Montreal winner Christos Georgiu’s Under the Stars, Hillmar Oddson’s Cold Light, Gunter Grass adaptation Call of the Toad, Srdjan Karanovic’s Venice competition entry Loving Glances. San Sebastian competition entry Border Post.

"Some films will be released theatrically," says Downey, "and others will go directly to DVD, depending on the market conditions at the time and the type or film in question. Either way both will feed into our broadcast plans for the complete F&ME package via terrestrial and VOD and other internet based platforms."

Recently completed films by F&ME include, Quest for a Heart - an animation film featuring Mackenzie Crook and Lisa Stansfield; Guillermo Groizard’s urban thriller Mirror Maze and Raimo O. Niemi’s Lapland set teen drama Mystery of the Wolf, and Miguel Alcantud’s Anastezi, Icelandic comedy Astropia, and Juraj Jakubisko’s historical epic Bathory.

Big-budget Bathory has just hit one million admissions as of September 15, in the Czech Republic.
Bathory, a Czech-Slovak-Hungarian-British co-production with a budget of 11 million Euros, the most expensive film in history of Central-European cinematography, had a world premiere July 10, 2008, in both the Czech Republic and Slovakia. In the Czech Republic, Bathory is now the fourth most succesful movie in box office history.

Contact:
Katy Moylan 0207 3793973

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