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First Cannes For The Official Partnership
Between uMEDIA And Celluloid Dreams As It
Expands Into The UK France & North America

Karl Richards, Lauraine Heftler & Peter-Bevan
European film group uMedia has officially expanded its partnership with Hengameh Panahi's sales company Celluloid Dreams, and the joint venture attends its first Cannes with a slate that includes Cannes competition film Takashi Miike's Shield of Straw (Wara No Tate) and Katrin Gebbe's Un Certain Regard title Tore's Pogo (Tore Tanzt).

uMedia's CEO Adrian Politowski comented that, following a highly profitable partnership during this year's European Film Market at Berlin, the two companies have cemented their international acquisitions and sales operations with offices during Cannes.

Peter Rogers, who heads up uMedia's sales division, uConnect, will share acquisitions and sales duties with Hengameh Panahi of both mainstream and specialised fare along with Celluloid Nightmares' genre slate as part of the package.

"This long-term collaboration is of huge benefit to us," says Rogers. "Hengameh is a highly valued industry figure and someone whose expertise and renown we are eager to bring into the fold here at uMedia."

Hengameh Panahi of Celluloid Dreams added: "This closer working relationship enables us to continue to broaden our selling power with Peter and his team and focus more on content through Cannes and beyond."

Further fuelling uMedia's international expansion into the UK, France and North America, CEO and Founder Adrian Politowski has appointed longtime collaborators Karl Richards and Peter Bevan to expand uMedia's London office and set up shop at the company's new Los Angeles office. Politowski has also appointed French producer Lauraine Heftler to head up the company's new Paris office.

Adrian Politowski said: "Beyond being present in key strategic locations that will help our own production pipe, this expansion enables uMedia to offer other producers solutions whether they look for a Belgian, UK, or French partner as well as provide executive Production services to finance more films."

Karl Richards (The Expatriate, Jackboots on Whitehall) and Peter Bevan (Eichmann, Dread), the producers of uMedia backed Mariah Mundi And The Midas Box, will operate out of London and Los Angeles respectively under the uMedia banner to represent the group and grow their production slate in closer collaboration with US and UK partners.

Richards will serve as in-house producer and provide a solid London base for new projects whilst Bevan will work closely with LA based agents, financiers and co-producers to build the company's international production slate. Heftler (The Patience Stone, L'Amour dure trois ans) meanwhile will operate out of Paris, building a slate of projects with French and other European partners.

Richards and Bevan believe this new chapter will help expand their market strength as producers and enable them to have a solid support structure behind them. "We've been working with Adrian and the team at uMedia for some time now and we've found it's a strong and effective relationship. We're excited to be joining the company as it expands its production slate and furthers its international presence."

"uMedia is a dynamic and internationally focused company and I'm delighted to have the opportunity to bring my experience to open these new production channels," adds Heftler.

Projects that are part of the deal that the joint venture is selliing at Cannes include acclaimed US director Noah Baumbach's Frances Ha, Catriona McKenzie's Takeshi Kitano's Outrage Beyond,, Daniel Algrant's Greetings From Tim Buckley starring Gossip Girl's Penn Badgley as Jeff Buckley alongside Imogen Poots, the Fright Night star who is soon to appear in Terrence Malick's Knight of Cups, S. Craig Zahler's Bone Tomahawk starring Timothy Olyphant, Peter Sarsgaard, Jennifer Carpenter, Richard Jenkins and Kurt Russell, Heitor Dahlia's Bald Mountain, and Daniele Luchetti's comedy Those Happy Years. Other uMedia titles are Giuseppe Tornatore's English language feature The Best Offer, starring Geoffrey Rush, Sylvia Hoeks, Jim Sturgess and Donald Sutherland, Closed Curtain from Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi, and Warwick Ross and David Roach's Red Obsession narrated by Russell Crowe.
 
 
 
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