CANNES — X-Filme Creative Pool topper Maria Koepf is ankling after 11 years to set up shop on her own.
Koepf co-managed X-Filme alongside Stefan Arndt and his wife Manuela Stehr and produced several X-Film pics including Tom Tykwer’s “Run, Lola, Run,” which she exec produced, Tykwer’s Miramax-financed “Heaven” and Locarno Silver Leopard winner “En Garde.”
Her move highlights speculation about X-Filme’s future. Earlier this year, three of its four founders, helmers Tykwer, Wolfgang Becker and Dani Levy (“Go for Zucker!”) launched a separate production outfit named Y-Filme.
Meanwhile, X-Filme is embroiled in lengthy strategic discussions with the new management of Senator Entertainment. Senator acquired a 51% stake in X-Filme in 2000 but later plunged into a two-year insolvency from which it’s only just emerging.
Nevertheless, Koepf insisted that her reasons for leaving are purely personal.
“There are no grounds to worry about the future of X-Filme and it’s not why I’m leaving,” she said.
Koepf plans to produce “distinctive, emotionally powerful stories with a strong directorial signature in the $3 million region. When you co-manage a company a lot of things land on your desk that are nothing to do with filmmaking. This is an opportunity for me to concentrate again on producing,” Koepf added.
Her most recent production. “Ein Freund von mir” (A Friend of Mine), which she produced with Tykwer, will be in German cinemas in October.
This summer Koepf will produce another X-Filme laffer, “Prince Edouard, Maximillian Minski und Ich,” about the growing pains of the daughter of a Jewish-American mother and German father in Berlin.
The first project of her new production outfit, “Heimat Revisited” by German helmer Hans Steinbichler, is in development.