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APPOINTMENT

Following Monday’s announcement that Barbara Salabè is leaving WarnerMedia, the company has appointed Thomas J. Ciampa as country manager for Italy, Spain and Portugal, reporting directly to WarnerMedia EMEA & Asia (excluding China) president Priya Dogra.

Ciampa is tasked with heading the development and execution of WarnerMedia’s strategy and optimization of all commercial and group marketing activities in the three countries. His responsibilities include overseeing theatrical distribution, local theatrical productions, content licensing, home entertainment, consumer products and ad sales and affiliate distribution for the WarnerMedia channels and streaming services.

“Thomas has a deep understanding of our businesses and the brands and franchises that have so much resonance with our fans across these regions,” said Dogra in a release. “He also brings a strong commitment to our distribution partners as well as to the creative community. Thomas is a dynamic leader with an impressive track record and will be an integral part of my leadership team.”

For Ciampa: “It is a huge privilege to lead WarnerMedia in Italy, Spain and Portugal. In my three decades at WarnerMedia, I have seen the many ways in which our entertainment and brands touch people’s lives. Our position is strong and my leadership team and I will focus on superserving our consumers, working closely with our partners and delivering continued growth. I would also like to extend my gratitude to Barbara for her remarkable leadership.”

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Blue Ant International has appointed Bryan Gabourie to the position of senior VP of international sales and partnerships, based out of New York and reporting to Blue Ant Intl. executive VP Solange Attwood. Gabourie is tasked with overseeing all sales activities for the companies’ originals, pre-sales, content licensing, co-productions and strategic partnerships in the U.S. Most recently, Gabourie was VP of global content sales and digital licensing at A+E.

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Mopar Studios has appointed Sharon Remmer as its new creative director, drama. In the role, Remmer will formulate growth strategies for the company’s slate and work to strengthen its position in the global marketplace. She will also be responsible for running the company’s U.K. operation as the company continues its push into English-language content production. Remmer joins Mopar after more than thirty years in the industry, most recently at her own company SR StoryWorks.

THEATER

Peaky Blinders: The Redemption of Thomas Shelby,” a stage adaptation of the popular BBC series, will open at the Birmingham Hippodrome on Sept. 27 before embarking on a London and larger U.K. tour. The theatrical version was adapted by series creator Steven Knight in collaboration with the Rambert dance company. Featuring choreographed dance routines and specially-commissioned music, the show is directed by Benoit Swan Pouffer and features a live band which accompanies the perfomance.

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Peaky Blinders Stage Show Credit: Rambert, Birmingham Hippodrome

FACTUAL

BBC Factual has unveiled a new documentary series to be hosted by David Attenborough which will examine the final day of the era of dinosaurs using a combination of state-of-the-art CGI and the latest scientific understanding on the subject. “Dinosaurs: The Final Day,” produced by BBC Studios Productions with Nova and GBH Boston for BBC One and BBC iPlayer, will use evidence uncovered at Tanis, a prehistoric graveyard in the low hills of North Dakota, to formulate the most accurate depiction yet on how a massive asteroid caused the global mass extinction event that ended the time of the dinosaurs.

DISTRIBUTION

Fremantle has dealt its fashion docu-series “Kingdom of Dreams” to HBO Max in Europe, Latin America and Asia and Crave in Canada. A non-fiction story told with a cinematic flare; “Kingdom of Dreams” revisits the world of fashion from the early 1990s through the 2010s with the use of rare library material, personal archives and narrative-driven interviews. Created by Misfits Entertainment, the series is produced in collaboration with Fremantle, which handles international distribution.

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Kingdom of Dreams Credit: Fremantle

FESTIVALS

Swiss documentary festival Visions du Réel will honor Italian writer-director-producer Marco Bellocchio with its upcoming Honorary Award. In addition to the recognition, Visions du Réel will host a masterclass with the filmmaker and a retrospective of around ten selected works from his illustrious career. The festival will also screen Bellocchio’s latest documentary “Marx Can Wait.” This year’s festival runs April 7-17 in partnership with the Cinémathèque suisse and ECAL (Lausanne University of Art and Design).

“Marco Bellocchio exercises impressive liberty and modernity to combine registers of images and genres, moving between fiction and documentary, between the intimate and the collective. We are extremely happy and delighted to pay tribute to an indisputable master of contemporary filmmaking, as well as to a body of work which, from the very first films, has demonstrated dazzling modernity, and is brooding, subversive and audacious, formidably eclectic,” explained Emilie Bujès, Visions du Réel’s artistic director.

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Marco Bellocchio Credit: Anna Camerlingo

FUNDING

The Pitch 2022 Film Fund has unveiled the winners of this year’s project competition. Nativity story “The Innkeeper” from Irish writer Denise Deegan took the Comedy Award while cautionary environmental tale “Stump” from Finnish writer Silva Kuusniemi scored The Pitch’s Drama Award. Additionally, The Pitch has awarded Eva Edo with the Lucy Scher Award as the best female filmmaker for her project “Maternal.” The winning projects are in their early stages of development and will receive funding and mentoring to help their creators flesh out their ideas and approach a state of readiness for production.