You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Down Under outpost

Franks to launch Lionsgate's Australian operations

Simon Franks, who sold his U.K. indie Redbus Film Distribution to Lionsgate a year ago, has moved Down Under to launch an Australian distribution arm for Lionsgate.

The 35-year-old Londoner flew out from Blighty two weeks ago and will spend all of 2007 in Oz setting up Lionsgate’s operation there.

He launched Redbus in 1998 with his partner Zygi Kamasa and built it into a significant U.K. player with pics including “Bend It Like Beckham,” “Open Water” and “Good Night, and Good Luck.”

They sold the company to Lionsgate for $35 million in October 2005. Kamasa stayed on to run the newly renamed Lionsgate U.K. full time, with Franks moving into a part-time role under a three-year deal.

At the time of the takeover, Lionsgate said that it expected to tap Franks’ entrepreneurial talents to help it seek out further opportunities for international expansion.

Lionsgate CEO John Feltheimer revealed the Australian move in a conference call with analysts earlier this month to announce the company’s second-quarter results, but the news was not widely reported.

Lionsgate U.K. has enjoyed a strong year under its new ownership, with “Saw III” grossing $16.3 million. Pic took $4.8 million via Hoyts in Australia.

More Film

  • Justice League

    Box Office: 'Justice League' Stalls with $94 Million Opening Weekend

    Simon Franks, who sold his U.K. indie Redbus Film Distribution to Lionsgate a year ago, has moved Down Under to launch an Australian distribution arm for Lionsgate. The 35-year-old Londoner flew out from Blighty two weeks ago and will spend all of 2007 in Oz setting up Lionsgate’s operation there. He launched Redbus in 1998 […]

  • 12th and Clairmount Movie Review

    Film Review: '12th and Clairmount'

    Simon Franks, who sold his U.K. indie Redbus Film Distribution to Lionsgate a year ago, has moved Down Under to launch an Australian distribution arm for Lionsgate. The 35-year-old Londoner flew out from Blighty two weeks ago and will spend all of 2007 in Oz setting up Lionsgate’s operation there. He launched Redbus in 1998 […]

  • Sam Rockwell

    Film News Roundup: Palm Springs Festival Honors Sam Rockwell for 'Three Billboards'

    Simon Franks, who sold his U.K. indie Redbus Film Distribution to Lionsgate a year ago, has moved Down Under to launch an Australian distribution arm for Lionsgate. The 35-year-old Londoner flew out from Blighty two weeks ago and will spend all of 2007 in Oz setting up Lionsgate’s operation there. He launched Redbus in 1998 […]

  • Project Runway

    Weinstein Co. Feeling Pressure to Find a Buyer (EXCLUSIVE)

    Simon Franks, who sold his U.K. indie Redbus Film Distribution to Lionsgate a year ago, has moved Down Under to launch an Australian distribution arm for Lionsgate. The 35-year-old Londoner flew out from Blighty two weeks ago and will spend all of 2007 in Oz setting up Lionsgate’s operation there. He launched Redbus in 1998 […]

  • Terminator 2: Judgment Day review

    'Terminator' Writing Team Adds Billy Ray to Put Final Polish on Script

    Simon Franks, who sold his U.K. indie Redbus Film Distribution to Lionsgate a year ago, has moved Down Under to launch an Australian distribution arm for Lionsgate. The 35-year-old Londoner flew out from Blighty two weeks ago and will spend all of 2007 in Oz setting up Lionsgate’s operation there. He launched Redbus in 1998 […]

  • Josh Hartnett, Margarita Levieva Starring in

    Josh Hartnett, Margarita Levieva Starring in Thriller 'Inherit the Viper'

    Simon Franks, who sold his U.K. indie Redbus Film Distribution to Lionsgate a year ago, has moved Down Under to launch an Australian distribution arm for Lionsgate. The 35-year-old Londoner flew out from Blighty two weeks ago and will spend all of 2007 in Oz setting up Lionsgate’s operation there. He launched Redbus in 1998 […]

  • Mahershala Ali Burn

    Mahershala Ali to Star in, Executive Produce Crime Thriller 'Burn'

    Simon Franks, who sold his U.K. indie Redbus Film Distribution to Lionsgate a year ago, has moved Down Under to launch an Australian distribution arm for Lionsgate. The 35-year-old Londoner flew out from Blighty two weeks ago and will spend all of 2007 in Oz setting up Lionsgate’s operation there. He launched Redbus in 1998 […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content