Paul Cohen and Julius Nasso have launched Manhattan Pictures Intl., a Gotham-based motion picture distribution and production company.
The company’s first release will be the Nasso-produced “One Eyed King” starring William Baldwin, Armand Assante and Chazz Palminteri. Currently in post, a May release is planned.
Cohen will head Manhattan as its CEO and serve as president of distribution. Nasso will be president of Manhattan’s production division.
Acquiring and producing
Company plans to acquire four theatrical features in its first year and as many as 12 films annually thereafter. Manhattan also plans to produce two titles during its first year, with an increased slate in the future.
Manhattan board chairman Joseph Amiel will represent the interests of Madison Entertainment Partners, a funding entity that purchased foreign sales company Seagal-Nasso Intl.
The partnership includes Manhattan board members E. Donald Lass, a former newspaper publisher and head of Press Broadcasting; communications, media and political strategist Paul Manafort of international business/financial company Davis Manafort; and actor Danny Aiello. Actor Stephen Baldwin will serve as a consultant with the company.
Amiel and Aiello will be accompanying Baldwin, Nasso and Cohen, along with an acquisition team, to this year’s Sundance Film Festival.
Years of experience
Cohen has spent the last three decades in independent distribution, overseeing pics such as Gillian Armstrong’s “My Brilliant Career,” “Caligula,” the Academy Award-winning “Mephisto,” “The Icicle Thief” and “Bad Lieutenant.”
In 1997, Cohen co-founded Stratosphere Entertainment, where he acquired titles such as Oscar nominee “The Thief” and “Hideous Kinky” starring Kate Winslet.
Nasso began his producing career while working with Sergio Leone on “Once Upon a Time in America” in 1980. With Steven Seagal, he formed Seagal-Nasso Prods. in 1986 and produced eight Warner Bros. titles including “Under Siege” and “On Deadly Ground.”