The new venture plans to release two films annually, beginning next year through Universal, which is committed to handling worldwide theatrical marketing and distribution for the company’s feature films, with eOne handling theatrical distribution across Canada, the U.K., Australia/New Zealand, Benelux, and Spain.
EOne, the lead investor in Makeready, will also handle international distribution of all TV content. JPMorgan Chase will lead the production facility for the new enterprise.
Weston most recently served for five years as president and chief executive officer of New Regency, which he departed a year ago. He oversaw “The Revenant,” “Birdman,” “Gone Girl,” “12 Years a Slave,” and “The Big Short.” Prior to joining New Regency, Weston served as president of production for Paramount Pictures, overseeing “Star Trek,” “Cloverfield,” “The Fighter,” “Shutter Island,” “G.I. Joe,” and “Rango.”
“I am lucky to have Universal and eOne as partners,” Weston said. “I have always admired everything my longtime friend Donna Langley has done. We share similar business philosophies and sensibilities. Combining our easy relationship with their brilliant marketing, Universal is a comfortable and natural fit. In eOne, I’ve found an ambitious global likeminded partner who shares my passion for great content. I believe that the confidence that Darren Throop and the eOne team have shown in me and Makeready will prove to be the foundation for a long and successful future together.”
Veteran executive Pam Abdy will head Makeready’s executive team. The company is headquartered in Culver City, Calif.
Makeready is developing “Saigon,” a TV series from Leonardo DiCaprio and Jennifer Davisson’s Appian Way and writer David James Kelly. Abdy landed the recent New York Times bestselling novel “They Can’t Kill Us All,” which chronicles the formation of the Black Lives Matter movement and is being developed as a limited series. The company is also working on a series based on the Boom! graphic comic “Old City Blues” with screenwriter Arash Amel attached, and a show about teens and 20-year-olds, with Chloë Grace Moretz executive producing.
Evolution Media, a merchant bank focused on the media and sports industries, orchestrated the deal. Weston is represented by Latham & Watkins, and eOne is repped by Mayer Brown and in-house counsel.