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Endgame kicks off Italian fund

L.A. company invests $20 mil

ROME — Los Angeles-based Endgame Entertainment has joined the $32 million film fund being launched by Italy’s Piedmont Film Commission as a mixed private and public enterprise.

Endgame, an equity production fund whose upcoming slate includes Bob Dylan biopic “I’m Not There,” and whose previously released titles include “Proof,” “Hotel Rwanda” and “Lord of War,” will put up Euros 15 million ($20 million) of the five-year revolving fund. The bulk of the remaining coin is coming from Piedmont’s regional government.

The first-of-its-kind fund, called Piedmont Film Company, is being touted as ushering in equity funding in Italy, albeit in embryonic form.

Eligible projects will be in the $5 million to $25 million range with 75% of their budgets previously covered and casting contractualized, said the fund’s promoter Giulia Marletta. Another requirement is that one-fourth of each pic’s budget be spent in Piedmont, the Northern Italian region whose capital is Turin, host of the 2006 Winter Olympics.

Shooting in Turin is Italo helmer Giuliano Montaldo’s epic “St. Petersburg,” while cameras will start rolling there on Marco Tullio Giordana’s Fascist-era epic “Crazy Blood” next month.

Piedmont Film Commish topper Stefano Della Casa said a key criteria in selecting projects will be “their potential appeal for international audiences.”

The Piedmont Film Company will begin selecting projects for feature films, TV movies, and various animation formats in September.

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