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New firm to put its brand on product placement

Brand X to focus on projects that maximize investment

Production and talent management concern Benderspink has partnered with Wall Street corporate raider Richard Bard and producer Bill Papariella’s newly formed media company, 9th Floor Media Holdings, to form Brand X Entertainment.

New venture will focus on developing projects that are designed to maximize corporate sponsorship and return on investment in film for corporate clients replacing traditional product placement deals.

Premise, principals say, is for Brand X to allow corporate sponsors to invest from the very beginning of a project, integrating their products or services into films, and therefore reap the benefits if the release were successful.

“We feel the timing is right to create a novel, innovative approach to corporate sponsorship in the industry,” said JC Spink of Benderspink.

Benderspink partner and producer Chris Bender called the creation of Brand X “an exciting next logical step in our evolution.”

Benderspink has exec produced such pics as Warner Bros.’ “Cats and Dogs” as well DreamWorks Pictures’ “The Ring.”

“Our goal is to produce successful entertainment properties that are also profitable vehicles for our clients, giving them the opportunity to both market their brand and realize a return on their investment,” said Papariella, president of 9th Floor Media.

Veteran producer and 9th Floor Media production principal Andy Meyer (“Fried Green Tomatoes,” “The Breakfast Club”) will also serve as a producer on Brand X projects.

New venture will initially focus on products that target the young — for example, Papariella said Brand X is in negotiations to tap the burgeoning Latino market for a major brand he declined to identify, and plans to announce partnerships with corporate sponsors in the upcoming months.

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