Reliance Entertainment funds David Linde‘s film company

MUMBAI: David Linde and Reliance Entertainment have jointly announced the official formation and funding of Linde’s new company, a platform for film production and financing.

Reliance Entertainment is providing the capital to finance the yet unnamed new venture. Working from a global distribution structure combining studio and independent distribution, the company will both produce and finance projects creating a clear “brand” of films designed for the worldwide marketplace.

Alan J. Levine and Josh Small of Canon Media Partners structured the company’s business plan, arranged for the equity capital, and provided financial and strategic advice to both Linde and Reliance. Levine will join Linde and Reliance Entertainment’s Amitabh Jhunjhunwala on the new company’s Board.

The new entity is specifically designed to take advantage of Linde’s experience in successfully bridging studio and independent production
and distribution while managing and building both existing and start-up companies.

“Our company is designed in response to a changing world. We have the opportunity to tap into the global industry’s desire for films while at the same time build a business that offers opportunities to our creative partners by harnessing both traditional means of distribution as well as new technologies, platforms and markets,” said Linde. “Reliance has already proven itself a great partner and we look forward to working with them as we enter this new world.”

Linde has simultaneously concluded a production and distribution agreement for the new company with Universal Pictures, whereby Universal will have the first option to co-finance each developed project and distribute the films in the United States and other significant international territories. For films that Universal does not distribute domestically, Linde will produce and distribute such films with other motion picture studios.

"Over the years David has proven himself as an adept builder of content-based companies and Universal has been a beneficiary, said Universal Chairman Adam Fogelson and Co-Chairman Donna Langley. "We look forward to being part of his new venture.”

Added Linde, “Universal gave me the time, money and space to form a plan that we all believe in and can execute on. Their contribution has been significant and very much appreciated." Outside of the Studio distributed territories, the new company will maintain a network of direct output partnerships in several key territories around the globe, serving to complete its worldwide distribution platform. The company has recently concluded output deals for all its productions with the following companies:

Entertainment One (eOne) for Canada, the UK and Benelux (Belgium, Netherlands, Luxembourg)
Italia Films for the Middle East, Greece and Turkey
Nordisk Film for the Nordic Countries (Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland and Iceland)
Revolutionary Films for Eastern Europe (excluding Russia)
Sun Distribution for Latin America
Tele München Group (Germany, Austria along with certain rights in Switzerland, Luxembourg and Liechtenstein).
“I’ve had the great fortune of distributing films through each of these companies, and have known their principals for many years,” noted Linde. “Each is not only the market leader in their countries, but also a tremendous advocate for filmmakers and audiences alike.”

Reliance will handle distribution of the films in India.

Joining Linde in the senior management will be Tory Metzger as president of Production and Adam Rymer as the company’s COO.

“Adam and Tory bring incredibly complimentary skill sets to the company,” added Linde. “Allowing us to not only support our creative partners with experience and taste but also with a clear vision for the best and most complete presentation of each film.”

In his role as COO, Rymer will oversee all financial operations and day-to-day business matters of the company. Rymer was most recently SVP of Digital Platforms at Universal Pictures overseeing mobile, gaming, digital cinema, digital distribution and new technology initiatives for the studio. He also served the studio as VP of Business Development and Strategic Planning where he was closely involved in film finance opportunities and M&A activities. Prior to his career in film, he worked in the digital and strategy units of Universal Music Group and as an Associate for LEK Consulting. He holds a A.B. in Applied Mathematics and Economics from Harvard College and an M.B.A. in Finance from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.

As President of Production Tory Metzger will oversee creative elements of all projects financed and developed by the production entity.
Prior to joining Linde, she most recently served as President of MRC film group where she supervised the company’s film slte.

Linde was represented by attorneys Harold Brown, Thomas Camp and Ken Garrett of Gang, Tyre, Ramer & Brown and Reliance by Stephen Scharf and Jordan Lichtman of O’Melveny and Myers. David Boyle provided additional legal services for Linde in negotiating the international distribution output deals.

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