Empire announces $20 mn production slate for 2008

Mumbai: Empire Film Group has announced production commitments and financing for seven feature films or original projects scheduled for 2008 with a collective cost of more than $20 million. The production slate ranges from lower-budgeted, direct-to-DVD projects such as The Southern Fried Comedy Tour, to major, theatrical action-adventures such as the terrorist-themed football thriller The Game.
"We have a lot of confidence in the commercial value of these original productions," said Empire Film Group CEO Dean Hamilton-Bornstein, "for the most part, financing has been structured through a combination of presales, co-production ventures, equity participants and access to tax benefits and rebates. We believe that these creative forms of financing partnerships provide a major boost to Empire’s asset base with little or no risk to the company."
Titles in the 2008 production slate include Shadow Vision, The Game, The Southern Fried Comedy Tour and Primate. Empire has committed to three additional productions that are part of the $20 million slate, details of which will be announced shortly.
In addition to these seven projects, Empire is also progressing with the pre-production of Havana Heat and development of four additional, theatrical-caliber features. In total, Empire is currently producing or developing twelve productions with a cumulative production investment of more than $35 million.
"The Empire production slate represents the level of high-profile, theatrical titles that independent studios need to flourish in today’s distribution marketplace," said Empire Home Entertainment CEO of the distribution division of Empire Film Group Eric Parkinson. "The in-house capability of Empire to develop, produce and finance high-profile productions strengthens the company’s ability to react to the marketplace and satisfy changing demands. Our recent upgrade of Shadow Vision to 3D is representative of our ability to adapt to market opportunities, and to maximize the company’s success."
The seven films comprising the $20 million investment are all scheduled to commence production during 2008, with most slated for release during 2009.