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UIP’s Lowson exiting at behest of U, Par

Replacement to be announced shortly

SYDNEY — Brian Lowson, United Intl. Pictures’ chief numbers-cruncher for the past three years, is leaving the company March 28.

Lowson, exec VP of finance and administration at the London-based theatrical distrib, was not offered a renewal of his contract.

An internal announcement from UIP chairman-chief exec Paul Oneile indicated a replacement will be announced shortly.

UIP declined comment and Lowson did not return calls last week.

It’s believed that Lowson had clashed frequently with Oneile and president-chief operating officer Andrew Cripps, and with the brass at partner studios Universal and Paramount.

It’s understood that Par and U issued the edict not to renew Lowson’s deal. “It came down to personality and style,” one source familiar with Lowson said. “He has an abrasive personality and that rubbed a lot of people the wrong way. He wasn’t a team player.”

Together with the UIP hierarchy, Lowson has been working on ways to cut the company’s overhead at the behest of both partners, and there’s no suggestion he wasn’t performing his job well.

In the internal memo, Oneile thanked Lowson for his contributions, particularly in the planning and budgetary process and in a review of UIP’s advertising agency deals.

Lowson did have his admirers in Hollywood. “He’s an amusing character, larger than life,” said one studio exec who’s dealt with him.

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