$100m fund set up for financing feature films

February 14, 2013 - 4:51:24 am

DOHA: Doha Film Institute (DFI) in conjunction with Participant Media, a leading provider of entertainment, has formed a $100m revolving fund to finance a slate of feature films.

It was announced yesterday by Jim Berk, CEO of Participant Media, and Abdulaziz Al Khater, CEO of DFI. 

The five-year Film Fund will provide production and development financing for 12 to 16 feature films, with Participant and DFI working in collaboration to develop the films, oversee production and arrange global distribution.

Participant and DFI are also exploring a joint venture to create content for Participant’s new television channel, launching in August; establishment of a distribution outlet for DFI’s film production through Participant’s media interests in the US and other territories; creation of an Arabic version of TakePart.com, Participant’s online division and Social Action Network, to create Middle-Easter content in Arabic and English for distribution around the world; and establishment of a Participant branch at DFI’s headquarters. 

Participant and DFI are currently co-financing, along with other parties, an animated feature film adaptation of Khalil Gibran’s The Prophet, which will be released next year.

Berk said: “We are excited about working with DFI to create a transformational partnership for both parties. This new relationship provides us with a partner whose goals of international expansion and desire to co-finance a diverse slate of films that entertain, enlighten and engage with global audiences are in total alignment with our own long-term business strategies.” 

Al Khater said: “We are delighted to partner with Participant Media, a company that aims to finance and produce films that are both commercially successful and socially relevant — a vision that is very much shared at DFI. We are confident that this collaboration will be a catalyst for greater cross-cultural appreciation as we embark on a diverse and exciting set of projects. The partnership gives us the opportunity to reach and inspire broader audiences and expand our platforms for the development, promotion and distribution of compelling storytelling.” The deal was negotiated by DFI’s head of Film Financing Paul Miller and Advisor/Consultant Hal Sadoff, and Jeff Ivers, COO, Participant Media.    

The Peninsula