Distrib topper Blanco leaving Planeta’s orbit

Exec has no definitive decision about next steps

MADRID — One of Spain’s best-known distrib execs, Adolfo Blanco, has ankled as general manager of Spanish-Italian media giant DeAPlaneta.

Blanco joined the Barcelona-based Planeta Group, a decades-old print and video publisher, in 1999 and helped steer the launch that year of the film/TV subsid Planeta 2010, which aimed to break into broadcasting, film production and distribution, rights brokering and niche TV channel packaging.

Under Blanco, Planeta emerged as an energetic if selective distrib or co-producer of niche to mid-budget fare for Spain, such as Roman Polanski’s “The Pianist,” which grossed E7.6 million ($9.5 million) in Spain or, more recently, “House of 1000 Corpses” ($911,923 after two weeks and still playing).

Blanco also closed significant catalog deals with Teutonic kidvidder EM.TV and pubcaster ZDF.

However, in 2002, Planeta 2010 was folded into DeAPlaneta, a giant joint venture created by Planeta and Italy’s DeAgostini, whose major move was to buy a controlling stake in Spanish broadcaster Antena 3 in April 2003.

Ambitions undecided

DeAPlaneta’s distribution ambitions — whether Planeta and Antena 3 will team to buy big titles on the international market, for instance — have yet to be seen.

“I haven’t taken a definitive decision about my next steps,” Blanco told Daily Variety. “I’m considering a wide range of options,” he added.

Before working at Planeta, Blanco served six years as head of sales and acquisitions at Spanish mini-major Filmax.

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