Senator buys stake in Bavaria Pictures

Pair will pact on features, TV movies

BERLIN — Bavaria Film and Senator Entertainment are joining forces on production.

Berlin-based Senator has acquired a stake in Bavaria’s film and TV movie division Bavaria Pictures via its Senator Film Munich arm.

Bavaria Film launched Bavaria Pictures in 2006 to develop and produce domestic and international features as well as high-profile TV movies.

While the companies did not provide financial details of the deal or say how large a stake Senator was acquiring, Senator CEO Helge Sasse will join Bavaria Pictures’ current managing director Jan S. Kaiser in running the venture.

Sasse said the new arrangement grew out of the two companies’ collaboration on the Michael Caine drama “Mr. Morgan’s Last Love” last year.

“Bavaria Pictures impressed me with their production infrastructure, their openness and straight-forwardness as well as their enthusiasm for our joint film project.,” Sasse said.

Kaiser added: “Bavaria Pictures has always been organized as a network, which encouraged earlier co-operations with Senator, be it as a distrib or co-producer. So it’s merely going the next step to solidify that successful co-operation in a joint venture.”

Bavaria Pictures will continue to work with other distribs, Kaiser stressed, including current collaborators Warner Bros. Germany.

Bavaria Film managing director Matthias Esche said the pact would help leverage the risks of its feature strategy. “The alliance marks a watershed in Bavaria Film’s traditional core business of theatrical feature production going forward,” he said.

Bavaria Pictures’ recent international co-productions include Ian Fitzgibbon’s “Death of a Superhero,” starring Andy Serkis and Thomas Brodie-Sangster.

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