Hill, Fields partners in indie firm

Producer Leonard Hill has made longtime associate Joel Fields a partner in his independent production company, changing the name from Leonard Hill Films to Hill-Fields Entertainment.

In conjunction with that move, in what Hill described as an effort to address the future of independent production, Hill-Fields has moved into a three-story office building on Wilshire Boulevard that the company acquired in hopes it will provide an environment to establish relationships with unaffiliated indie producers.

Hill, who is a partner in the distribution consortium ACI and serves as chairman of that stand-alone entity, acknowledged that there’s some risk associated with the overhead of the new offices but said he felt it was time to either make a commitment to expansion or risk “withering and withdrawal.”

Fields, 28, has been at Hill Films since 1985 in various capacities, most recently as exec VP of creative affairs, a position he’s held since 1990. He described the goal of the newly acquired building as becoming a “creative summer camp” that would attract creative people and stimulate strategic alliances between independents.

Hill and Fields will continue to serve as exec producers on all projects. The company produced five TV movies last year, including “Into the Deep Woods” and “Dead Before Dawn” for NBC as well as CBS’ “I Can Make You Love Me: The Stalking of Laura Black.”

A former ABC executive and outspoken advocate in relation to the financial interest and syndication rules, Hill formed his own production company with Philip Mandelker in 1980, which became Hill Films five years later after Mandelker’s death. Past projects include “The Jericho Mile,””Elvis” and “The Woman’s Room.”

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