LONDON -- Daniel Battsek is to be director of Channel 4's movie division Film4, following the news that David Kosse is to step down to join STX Entertainment.
In February, the Film4 chief unveiled the first major project to be boarded by Channel 4’s movie division since he took the reins last year: an adaptation of Graham Swift’s novel “Mothering Sunday.” It typifies the Film4 brand: smart, multi-layered auteur filmmaking. “I love anything that takes the audience by surprise – where they think they are seeing one thing, but actually there is so much more going on under the surface,” he told Variety.
Its slate includes films from movie-makers with a mix of experience, from talented newcomers like Rungano Nyoni with “I Am Not a Witch,” to more experienced directors, like Andrew Haigh with “Lean on Pete.” As well as championing British filmmaking, Film4 looks to back projects from international talent, such as Baltasar Kormakur’s “The Oath,” Yorgos Lanthimos’s “The Killing of a Sacred Deer,” and Sebastian Lelio’s “Disobedience.”
With an annual budget of just £25 million ($31.2 million) the company likes to partner with international film companies on projects, such as the co-financing deal with Fox Searchlight on Martin McDonagh’s “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri.” Battsek was previously president of Cohen Media Group, president of National Geographic Films, and president, filmed entertainment at Miramax Films.