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Miramax inks Korean distrib deal with Tae Won

CANNES — Proving that the Asian market is not totally dead — at least for major companies — Miramax Intl. has inked a 15-pic deal with Tae Won Entertainment in Korea.

The package includes high-profile releases such as “Scream 3,” “Reindeer Games,” “She’s All That” and “Dogma,” which is screening out of competition at this year’s fest.

The deal reunites Miramax with Tae Won, the Korean distrib of the original “Scream,” among other titles. Headed by Korean entrepreneur Taewon Chung, it is a diverse entity with interests in talent management, music and film distribution.

“They’re a hugely successful company and we’ve done a lot of business with them over the years,” said Rick Sands, Miramax chairman of worldwide distribution.

Tae Won has switched between brokering distribution deals between U.S. sellers and Korean distribs, and direct distribbing pics itself.

Tae Won is taking advantage of the fallout in Korea, where a lot of significant players, hit hard by the recession, have pulled out of the film business. But as the market begins to recover, there is room for some new buyers. Studios including Buena Vista Intl. have snapped up pics for the territory over the past few years.

Sands, who made the deal for Miramax along with Cedric Jeanson, executive VP of international sales and distribution, said that while prices had not recovered in Asia, some companies were stepping up.

In Japan, Gaga, Asmik ACE and Nippon Herald are looking slightly more active than they were at the American Film Market in March.