Paramount lays off Vantage

MUMBAI: Paramount Pictures has downsized its art-house division Paramount Vantage (formerly known Paramount Classics). Paramount seeks to combine the marketing, distribution and physical production operations.

Paramount Vantage has been responsible for benchmark releases like Babel, No Country For Old Men and There Will Be Blood. Paramount Vantage will continue as a production label under the administration of president Nick Meyer.

The move of combining the operations is to boost the strengths and resources and thereby reducing possibility of errors. The consolidation will eliminate three senior executive positions including distribution executive VP Rob Schulze.

Paramount also seeks to save $5 million to $10 million in expenses and will allow Vantage to produce about six to eight movies a year. The merged marketing department will be led by Paramount worldwide picture marketing president Gerry Rich.

Megan Colligan and Josh Greenstein will hold the post of co-presidents of marketing. The distribution operation will be led by Jim Tharp, and physical distribution will be supervised by Georgia Kacandes. Vantage employs about 80 people.

Last month, Warner Bros. announced that it would close Warner Independent Pictures, its specialty film division, and Picturehouse, the independent movie arm of New Line Cinema.

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