Sky banks on Scotts’ $50 million

Fund to be used toward release of three pics per year

Crystal Sky Finance and London-based financier Scotts Atlantic have created a $50 million P&A fund. The joint venture will be used to support the release of Crystal Sky acquisitions and productions.

CSF prexy Joseph Inga said he expected the revolving fund to be used toward the release of three pics per year. The films would go through major studios, using their pipelines in exchange for a distribution fee.

Crystal Sky, headed by Steven Paul, also used a P&A fund to release “Baby Geniuses” through Sony.

Many tax funds were killed last year by “Black Tuesday” — the day that Britain’s Inland Revenue closed the loophole that allowed funds to claim production costs as tax losses.

However, Scotts managing director Andrew Somper described the Crystal Sky fund as “pure equity” and, as such, U.K. tax law will have no effect on the fund.

“This is not about write-offs,” Somper says. “The general attitude has been that any money that comes from Europe is to be treated as a gift.”

By contrast, he says, “Our investors expect a return.”

Crystal Sky president Benedict Carver said that the company intended to target primarily mainstream titles that might benefit from an opportunistic release.

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