Echo Lake will back int’l helmers for World Visions

Co. has made deals with CheeK, Sivan

Privately financed Echo Lake Prods. has launched World Visions, a production and financing program of English-language films to be helmed by international directors.

Echo Lake has made writing/directing deals with Singapore’s CheeK and Santosh Sivan of India, and is developing a World Visions project with German director Fatih Akin.

Financing comes from Echo Lake’s equity fund as well as outside sources. Budgets will be in the $2 million-$3 million range, though some titles may be higher.

Discovery nod

CheeK’s first feature, “Chicken Rice War,” won the Discovery Award at the 2001 Toronto Intl. Film Festival. He’s repped by the Gersh Agency.

Sivan previously co-wrote and directed “The Terrorist,” which screened in Sundance and Toronto. First Look Media released Sivan’s latest film, “Asoka,” an epic about the 3rd century B.C. emperor, last fall.

Echo Lake is developing its Sivan project with Mark Burton of WonderFilms, who exec produced both of Sivan’s previous films. He’s repped by Broder Webb Chervin Silbermann.

Akin just wrapped production on his third feature, “Solino,” starring Moritz Bleibtreu (“Run Lola Run”).

‘Levity’ for Sony

Under president Douglas Mankoff and exec VP Andrew Spaulding, Echo Lake exec produced and provided financed “Levity,” the directorial debut of Ed Solomon now in post-production. “Levity” will be released domestically by Sony Pictures Classics.

Echo Lake exec produced and provided financing for “Thirteen Conversations About One Thing”; “The Big Empty,” starring Jon Favreau and Rachael Leigh Cook; and “La Ciudad.”

Echo Lake also financed and produced Allison Anders’ “Things Behind the Sun,” for which Don Cheadle is Emmy nominated.

Echo Lake international distribution consultant Peter Wetherell exec produced “Empty,” “Thirteen Conversations” and “Things Behind the Sun.”

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