It will handle two or three platform releases a year

Canadian film company E1 Entertainment is moving into theatrical film distribution in the U.S. but it has no plans to carve out a major chunk of that market.

Patrice Theroux, president of filmed entertainment at E1, told Variety that his company will be handling only two or three platform-release pics in the U.S. per year.

“We don’t plan to launch an aggressive theatrical operation. Rather it will be when we think there’s an opportunity to do it in a limited fashion,” said Theroux.

E1’s first release Stateside will be helmer Taylor Hackford’s “Love Ranch,” which E1 picked up international rights to a few weeks back after Aramid Entertainment Fund took control of the pic.

Pic was at first under the banner of Capitol Films but Aramid nabbed the pic when Capitol execs defaulted on a loan, in which the pic had been put up as collateral.

The pic stars Helen Mirren and Joe Pesci and is inspired by the real-life story of Joe and Sally Conforte, who ran the Mustang Ranch, the first legal brothel in Nevada. Pic is written by Mark Jacobson, who also wrote the article in New York Magazine that inspired the movie.

Pic will open in seven to 10 cities in the U.S. in June, and that is precisely the kind of limited release E1 will be handling for its pics in the U.S.

“Becoming a significant theatrical player in the U.S. is absolutely not a priority,” said Theroux.

Given its niche approach, he said E1’s U.S. suppliers, like Summit Entertainment, do not object to E1 entering the U.S. theatrical market.

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