You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Skoll toasts new shingle

Participant plans to produce four to six pix per year

Former eBay president Jeff Skoll has founded Participant Prods., a privately financed production shingle based in Los Angeles that plans to focus on projects that are both commercially viable and socially relevant.

Former Columbia Pictures president Peter Schlessel will serve on Participant’s board of directors.

Company has also made a housekeeping deal with “Adaptation” producer Ed Saxon. Participant plans to produce four to six films per year, with budgets of up to $40 million.

First project is an IFC Prods. co-production with the working title “American Gun.” Aric Avelino makes his writing and directing debut on the project, in which interwoven storylines focus on how American lives are affected by guns. IFC Films will distribute.

“The team,” Skoll said, “will lead Participant in finding socially relevant projects with broad commercial appeal — stories like ‘Erin Brockovich,’ ‘Gandhi’ or ‘Schindler’s List,’ which highlight these battles against injustices and bridge the gulf between ‘haves’ and ‘have-nots.’ ”

Jeff Ivers, who has held posts at MGM, Orion and Motion Picture Corp. of America, is Participant’s chief financial officer. Michael Roban, formerly of ContentFilm, will serve as exec VP of business affairs and operations.

Chris Salvaterra, formerly of Casey Silver Prods., is exec VP of creative affairs and production. Chris Adams, formerly of Lycos and Amazon.com, serves as senior VP of business development.

Nate Moore, formerly of Columbia Pictures, joins as a creative executive.

Skoll oversaw the creation of the eBay Foundation and founded the Skoll Foundation, which invests in social entrepreneurs.

More Film

  • 'Captain Marvel' Lands Day-And-Date China Release

    'Captain Marvel' Lands Day-And-Date China Release

    Marvel Studios’ hotly-anticipated Brie Larson-starring blockbuster “Captain Marvel” will hit Chinese theaters on the same day as it debuts in North America. The female-led picture will release on March 8, 2019, International Women’s Day. Written and directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, the film tells the story of Carol Danvers, a former fighter pilot who joins [...]

  • Peter Rabbit trailer

    Australia Box Office Recovers, Grows 3.8% in 2018

    Gross theatrical box office in Australia grew by 3.6% in 2018, to $890 million (A$1.25 billion). The score was propelled by a rebound in the performance of the top local films. Data from the Motion Picture Distributors Association of Australia published Tuesday showed aggregate cinema revenues recovering after a dip in 2017. While the 2018 [...]

  • Why Megan Mullally Won't Talk Politics

    Q&A: Why Megan Mullally Won't Talk Politics While Hosting the SAG Awards

    Megan Mullally is funny. The “Will & Grace” star can also sing and dance. While she’s not picking up the Oscar hosting gig after the Kevin Hart fiasco, Mullally will take center stage on Sunday, Jan. 27 when she makes her debut as the host of the 25th annual SAG Awards. Variety caught up with [...]

  • Glass trailer

    'Glass': Five Box Office Takeaways From M. Night Shyamalan's Thriller

    With his fifth No. 1 box office opening, M. Night Shyamalan has plenty to celebrate. “Glass,” the conclusion to a trilogy that consists of the 2000 cult hit “Unbreakable” and 2016’s box office sensation “Split,” topped the box office last weekend — though its win comes with a few caveats. James McAvoy reprised his role [...]

  • Berlin: Patra Spanou Picks Up Panorama

    Berlin: Patra Spanou Picks Up Panorama Title 'Family Members' (EXCLUSIVE)

    Patra Spanou has picked up world sales rights to “Los miembros de la familia” (Family Members), which will world premiere in the Berlin Film Festival’s Panorama section. Variety has been given an exclusive first look of the film’s trailer. The film is the second feature from writer/director Mateo Bendesky, and is produced by Agustina Costa [...]

  • Great Point Media, The Development Partnership

    Great Point Media, Development Partnership Join Forces on Slate of Movies

    Great Point Media and The Development Partnership, the development and production arm of the talent agency the Artists Partnership, are joining forces to develop, package, and co-produce multiple films, kicking off with three projects, including “Chasing Agent Freegard,” starring James Norton (“War & Peace”). “Chasing Agent Freegard,” which is being produced by “Captain Phillips” co-producer [...]

  • Berlin: FiGa Acquires ‘Landless,’ Drops ‘Hormigas’

    Berlin: FiGa Acquires ‘Landless,’ Drops ‘Hormigas’ Trailer (EXCLUSIVE)

    Sandro Fiorin’s Miami-based FiGa Films, a leading sales agent on the independent Latin American scene, has announced the acquisition of Brazilian doc “Landless,” and released a trailer for the Costa Rican-Spanish drama “El despertar de las hormigas.” Both features will play at this year’s Berlinale Forum and come from young Latin American filmmakers making their [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content