Another step to continental distrib

BERLIN — In the wake of recent investments by France’s Studio Canal in Germany, the programming giant — with fellow French firm Expand Gruppe — has launched its German subsidiary, Ellipse Deutschland Film und Fernseh Produktion.

The move is another step toward creating a European production and distribution operation. Studio Canal recently took over the small German arthouse distrib Tobis Filmkunst and also operates the merchandising arm Studio Canal Germany.

Ellipse Deutschland, based in Berlin with regional offices in Munich, Cologne and Hamburg, will focus on family entertainment for the bigscreen and small screen “tailor-made for the German market.”

Animated beginning

The company is kicking off its programming with a string of animation projects but will later include live-action, documentary and entertainment shows.

Ellipse CEO Stephan Schesch has had plenty of training producing toons and tyke films and was associate producer of local box office hits like “Werner” and “Kleines Arschloch.”

Ellipse Deutschland’s French parent company, Ellipse Programme, merged with Expand Images in February, creating Europe’s fourth largest production group with revenues of $250 million expected this year.

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