×

Russian Oligarch Roman Abramovich’s $100 Million Film Fund Launches

CANNES  —  Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich’s $100 million private film fund Kinoprime is ready for business, the fund’s CEO, Anton Malyshev, said in Cannes this week.

Financed to the tune of $100 million over the next three years, the fund can provide up to 50% of a film’s production budget, with a $2 million cap per project. Its first investment, “Fairy,” the new feature from Berlinale prize winner Anna Melikyan (“Mars”), is currently in post-production and will be released in Russia later this year.

The former managing director of the Russian State Film Fund, Malyshev said Kinoprime would meet a need currently unaddressed by the state funding mechanism. “The Russian cinema fund has just one aim: to make Russian films more box office in Russia. It’s about blockbusters,” said Malyshev. “We need quality movies—not only blockbusters. Very good art projects are good for us.”

He added that for an industry still largely bolstered by support from the Ministry of Culture, an applicant that arrived at Kinoprime with state funding secured would be “good for investment, because it’s low risk.”

The Croisette served as a fitting backdrop for Malyshev’s comments this week, with director Kantemir Balagov returning to Cannes with “Beanpole,” the follow-up to his Fipresci prize-winning “Closeness,” and writer-director Larisa Sadilova appearing with “Once in Trubchevsk.” Both films are screening in Un Certain Regard.

Malyshev said Kinoprime would cast a wide net for films to be considered by its 10-person selection committee, including projects from festival regulars, commercial directors, or up-and-coming prospects. “Kirill Serebrennikov has talent. And maybe a young prospective director has talent, too. Or maybe it’s Fedor Bondarchuk. He’s a star in Russia, and maybe an international star,” he said.

Malyshev added that the fund would also consider international projects, provided they had a “Russian flavor,” such as director or topline talent.

For its first year, Kinoprime is likely to invest in 10-15 projects, said Malyshev, although he expects that number to soon grow. The fund’s potential has hardly been scratched. “A hundred million dollars for three years is not so much. It’s like a boutique,” he said. “We are good now for a start.”

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • Samuel-W.-Gelfman

    Samuel Gelfman, Roger Corman Film Producer, Dies at 88

    Samuel Gelfman, a New York producer known for his work on Roger Corman’s “Caged Heat,” “Cockfighter” and “Cannonball!,” died Thursday morning at UCLA Hospital in Westwood following complications from heart and respiratory disease, his son Peter Gelfman confirmed. He was 88. Gelfman was born in Brooklyn, New York and was raised in Caldwell New Jersey [...]

  • Margot Robbie stars in ONCE UPON

    Box Office: 'Once Upon a Time in Hollywood' Pulls Ahead of 'Hobbs & Shaw' Overseas

    Sony’s “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” might not have hit No. 1 in North America, but Quentin Tarantino’s latest film is leading the way at the international box office, where it collected $53.7 million from 46 markets. That marks the best foreign opening of Tarantino’s career, coming in ahead of 2012’s “Django Unchained.” “Once [...]

  • Good Boys Movie

    Box Office: 'Good Boys' Leads Crowded Weekend With $21 Million

    The Bean Bag Boys, the self-appointed nickname for the trio of best friends in Universal’s “Good Boys,” are conquering much more than sixth grade. They are also leading the domestic box office, exceeding expectations and collecting $21 million on opening weekend. “Good Boys,” which screened at 3,204 North American theaters, is a much-needed win for [...]

  • Amanda Awards

    ‘Out Stealing Horses’ Tops Norway’s 2019 Amanda Awards

    HAUGESUND, Norway —  Hans Petter Moland’s sweeping literary adaptation “Out Stealing Horses” put in a dominant showing at Norway’s Amanda Awards on Saturday night, placing first with a collected five awards, including best Norwegian film. Celebrating its 35th edition this year, the Norwegian industry’s top film prize helped kick off the Haugesund Film Festival and [...]

  • Editorial use onlyMandatory Credit: Photo by

    Richard Williams, 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit' Animator, Dies at 86

    Renowned animator Richard Williams, best known for his work on “Who Framed Roger Rabbit,” died Friday at his home in Bristol, England, Variety has confirmed. He was 86. Williams was a distinguished animator, director, producer, author and teacher whose work has garnered three Oscars and three BAFTA Awards. In addition to his groundbreaking work as [...]

  • Instinct

    Locarno Film Review: 'Instinct'

    Now that “Game of Thrones” has finally reached its conclusion, releasing its gifted international ensemble into the casting wilds, will Hollywood remember just what it has in Carice van Houten? It’s not that the statuesque Dutch thesp hasn’t been consistently employed since her startling 2006 breakout in Paul Verhoeven’s “Black Book,” or even that she’s [...]

  • Good Boys Movie

    Box Office: 'Good Boys' Eyes Best Original Comedy Opening of 2019

    Universal’s “Good Boys” is surpassing expectations as it heads toward an estimated $20.8 million opening weekend at the domestic box office following $8.3 million in Friday ticket sales. That’s well above earlier estimates which placed the film in the $12 million to $15 million range, marking the first R-rated comedy to open at No. 1 [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content