During Courson’s time at pan-European film group Studiocanal, the company has gone from strength to strength. Previously serving as parent company Canal Plus Group’s general counsel, Courson has since overseen Studiocanal’s 2008 acquisition of Kinowelt in Germany as well as the 2005 purchase of U.K. indie distrib Optimum Releasing.

“From the time we acquired Optimum and Kinowelt, we had a clear goal in mind of a European studio-style operation across the three biggest countries: U.K., France and Germany,” says Courson. “Over the last 18 months, everything has accelerated and finally come together.”

KEY DEALS: Raised first slate financing ever for a European company with a €150 million ($209 million) deal with film financing fund Anton Capital Entertainment. Oversaw exclusive output deals with European online film and TV subscription service Lovefilm for Blighty and Germany and wide-ranging output deal with German broadcaster RTL.Increased production, which included Working Title’s “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,” a project that Studiocanal fully financed after Universal opted out.

Company is co-financing next Coen brothers’ pic “Inside Llewyn Davis,” produced by the Coen brothers and Scott Rudin, for which it is also handling international sales.

SPARE TIME: Skiing, surfing, windsurfing.

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