In need of digital content, Gotham-based ContentFilm is aligning itself with content provider Blow Up Pictures.
Content has acquired a minority stake in Jason Kliot and Joana Vicente’s Blow Up, enabling the shingle to develop and produce pics up to $2 million. Some of the pics will be distributed by ContentFilm, run by chairman Edward Pressman and prexy John Schmidt.
Separately, Blow Up holds a multi-pic distribution pact with Lot 47 Films, so some of the pics made by Blow Up and Content could be distributed by Lot 47, others by Content.
ICM’s Bart Walker helped package the deal.
Kliot and Vicente launched digital-focused Blow Up Pictures at the 1999 Sundance Film Festival. The company’s most recent digital feature, Peter Mattei’s “Love in the Time of Money,” is their third film to debut at Sundance in as many years. Pic stars Steve Buscemi, Jill Hennessy, Michael Imperioli, Rosario Dawson and Adrian Grenier.
Kliot and Vicente served as exec producers for Miguel Arteta’s “Chuck & Buck,” and they also produced Daniel Minahan’s “Series 7” — Sundance preems in 2000 and 2001, respectively. “Chuck & Buck” was distributed by Artisan, “Series 7” by USA Films.
Blow Up’s next release is Nicole Holofcener’s “Lovely and Amazing,” which premiered at the Telluride and Toronto Film Festivals; Lions Gate distributes this summer. Kliot and Vincent will continue to produce larger budget, nondigital films under their Open City Films banner.
ContentFilm plans to finance, produce and distribute an initial slate of 12-15 director-driven feature films to be shot mainly, but not exclusively, on digital video, with budgets of $3 million and under.
ContentFilm is fully funded by a number of equity investors, including lead investor Syntek Capital and Frank Biondi’s WaterView Advisors.
“One of our goals at Content is to supplement our own productions by bringing key producers in the digital film movement into long-term relationships with the company,” said Schmidt and Pressman. “Jason and Joana would be at the top of anyone’s list of digital producers working today, so we are delighted to have worked with them, Bart (Walker) and Andrew (Hurwitz) to find a creative way to structure our alliance.”