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PRODUCTION UK

New Development Fund for Pathé, BBC Films and UK FC

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Pathé UK, BBC Films and the UK Film Council have put aside £300,000 for the creation of a new Development Fund that will enable them to move quickly to acquire rights on a property or writer with a strong market value.

The committed combined seed money is available immediately and for the first 12 months of the new fund, but could be increased on higher prices asked for attractive projects.

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Francois Ivernel, Managing Director of Pathé UK said: “UK talent has fuelled some of the biggest international successes of our industry, whether it be in terms of literary adaptations, such as Harry Potter, or writing talent, such as Richard Curtis. Such major properties or talent rarely appear on the market, but when they do, we are conscious that too often (and not without some justification) the perception is that only the US Studios can afford to bid for such talent or engage in such major developments. We want to make everyone aware – talent, publishers, agents, whoever – that we are ready to step up to the plate for the right projects. Given the close personal and business relationship that we have built up with the BBC and the UK Film Council over the past several years (most recently as a recipient of a slate fund award), this partnership to engage in the development of 'bigger' properties feels a perfect fit.”

David Thompson, head of BBC Films, added: “We need key partners at the development stage if we are to be really competitive in the search for the most attractive projects and we are sure that Pathé and the BBC will be a very good fit.”

One of the previous projects developed by the three partners is Stephen FrearsMrs Henderson Presents.

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