Fred Smith, the 52-year-old founder, chairman and CEO of Federal Express, wants to deliver in Hollywood, too.
Smith is personally backing Alcon Entertainment, a fledgling film development, production and financing company, and hopes to follow in the footsteps of Morgan Creek’s Jim Robinson, another Hollywood outsider turned mini-mogul.
Under co-presidents Broderick Johnson and Andrew Kosove — partners with the Memphis billionaire in the film venture — Alcon aims to produce theatrical films budgeted in the $5 million to $20 million range, while also targeting $50 million-plus blockbusters with studio partners.
Kosove and Johnson have enlisted industry veteran and former Largo Entertainment president Joe Cohen as a consultant.
The Alcon team is already making waves in Hollywood. Like Morgan Creek’s Robinson, who got his feet wet by investing first in a couple of low-budget films, they have one co-financed picture in the can, “Talos the Mummy,” a low-budgeter directed by Russell Mulcahy (“The Shadow”).
“We intend to build a major independent production company which not only has the ability to fully finance its films,” the Alcon team declares, “but which also offers creative independence which is appealing in the indie world.”
One thing Smith can be sure of: It won’t be an overnight delivery.