When AMC and Regal joined forces to venture into distribution waters, they had the coin and the clout, but they still needed a captain for the ship. Enter distribution veteran Ortenberg, who says the two exhibs “were kind enough to come to me last summer and ask if I would be interested in running it.”
After accepting, the former Lionsgate exec attended to the biggest obstacle: “coming up with the name,” he quips. After settling on a moniker that evokes a sense of adventure, and then solidifying the business model that calls for acquiring and distributing eight to 10 feature films per year, Ortenberg quickly struck a pair of splashy deals with Universal Home Entertainment and Netflix. Latter pact calls for such Open Road pics as “Killer Elite” and the upcoming Liam Neeson starrer “The Grey” to forego pay cable windows and instead be available for online streaming.
“Starting a new company is loaded with challenges — both expected and unexpected,” he says.
KEY DEALS: Distribution pacts with Universal Home Entertainment and Netflix
SPARE TIME: Family
TOP CAUSE: On the boards of Film Independent and the Creative Coalition