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Katherine Lee to Head Asia Development for Ivanhoe Pictures

Veteran Hong Kong executive, Katherine Lee has joined U.S.-based Asian film investment group Ivanhoe Pictures as its head of production and development, Asia.

In the newly created role, she will oversee all of the company’s growing Asian film development and production activities. Based out of Ivanhoe’s Beijing and Hong Kong offices, Lee will report to L.A.-based CEO John Penotti, and will work closely with the company’s Beijing office.  

Lee recently headed Peter Chan’s company We Distribution, handling current hit “Dearest,” as well as American Dreams in China, The Warlords, and Bodyguards and Assassins.

She started her career in production in 1992, later working as a production coordinator for Sylvia Chang. She also had roles at sales agent Fortissimo Films and producer Filmko Pictures Limited respectively. 

Established last year with the backing of Robert Friedland, Ivanhoe has a $130mil co-financing pact with Fox International Productions, concentrating on select local language pictures in China, India, Korea, Japan and Taiwan.  The company recently sealed a partnership with Blumhouse Pictures and India’s Phantom Flims to produce a slate of ten Hindi language genre films.  

One of its first pictures is set to be an adaptation of Kevin Kwan’s comedic best-seller, “Crazy Rich Asians,” on which Ivanhoe partners with producer Nina Jacobson (“Hunger Games”) to finance and produce.

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