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Cannes: KKR and Atwater to Launch Library Pictures, Boost Local-Language Film

Local-language film making is to get a fillip through the launch of Library Pictures International. The company is backed by a consortium of investors led by media investment firm Atwater Capital and a newly formed Germany-based media company established by KKR.

The new firm is intended as a content-financing entity to support industry-leading filmmakers and distributors across the globe by investing in local production slates. It has signed multi-year slate-financing deals with prominent international production and distribution entities, including RSVP, the production company headed by former Disney India chief Ronnie Screwvala. Others include Sun Distribution (Latin America and Spain), which just bought Latin American and Iberian rights to Roland Emmerich’s “Moonfall,” being shopped at Cannes.

CAA’s media finance and global client strategy groups put together the financing entity and negotiated the slate deals with the initial partners. Evolution Media Capital served as sole financial advisor. David Taghioff, who previously served as co-head of CAA’s Global Client Strategy group, will lead and operate Library from its Los Angeles headquarters.

Locally produced films represent 40% to 90% of total box office grosses in markets experiencing strong growth, including India, Latin America and Spain. The company will expand strategically into other growth markets where vernacular content constitutes impressive market share.

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KKR is establishing a leading independent audiovisual content platform that covers all parts of the value chain in the TV and film industry. With the acquisitions of TMG, Universum, I&U and W&B Film, KKR has completed the first stage of the company development together with Fred Kogel, who leads the new company as CEO. Atwater is focused exclusively on the media and entertainment sectors, and is based in Los Angeles and Seoul.

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