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Loss of Steve Christian, CinemaNX and Pinewood Pictures founder

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We are deeply saddened by the sudden and unexpected loss of our dear friend Steve Christian. Steve founded CinemaNX and then founded and headed up Pinewood Pictures when CinemaNX merged with Pinewood. His warmth, intelligence and sense of fun as well as his vision and contributions to our industry will be greatly missed.

Please read more on Screen.

Pinewood Pictures news story image Welsh Gov

Welsh Government invests in development of High-End TV

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The Welsh Government, advised by Pinewood Pictures, has invested in the development of a High-End television series, Minotaur, from the ambitious, North Wales based production company, Mad as Birds.

It is the second television project supported by the Welsh Government’s Media Investment Budget.

The series will be written by Celyn Jones, actor/writer behind Set Fire to the Stars, and tells a darkly original, unique tale of human redemption and fear. It will be set between France and North Wales and has already attracted the attention of major global talent who wish to be involved.

Welsh Government Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Infrastructure Ken Skates said: “I am particularly pleased the Media Investment Budget is supporting home grown talent like Mad as Birds and that our funding will ensure the majority of filming takes place in Wales.

“TV and film productions provide work for a wide range of freelancers, creative industry companies and local businesses that create economic benefits for the region.”

“The Media Investment Budget has successfully invested in a number of high profile films that have boosted the economy and helped raise the profile and expertise of the creative industries in Wales.”

Sean Marley, Director of Mad as Birds, said: “Minotaur is an exciting take on the crime thriller genre and a poignant character study from the creative mind of Celyn Jones, an emerging Welsh talent. We’re delighted to have attracted funding from this new partnership and that they share our belief in the worldwide potential of this Welsh based drama series.”

Robert Norris, Senior Vice President of Pinewood Pictures, said: “We are delighted to bring Media Investment Budget funding to this exciting Welsh-based TV project – original and compelling drama of this sort is exactly what we are looking for.”

The project is aiming for pre-production in early 2017.

Read the full story here.

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Wales Identified as World Class Filming Location

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With its incredible natural beauty, huge variety of locations, and a swiftly growing crew and talent base, Wales is truly on its way to becoming a firm favourite with film and television productions from around the world.

The Welsh Media Investment Budget, as advised by Pinewood Pictures, is designed to help facilitate growth in the Welsh industry by attracting high-quality, world-class projects to the country.

For more information, check out Screen.

(Picture: the Black Mountains, Brecon Beacons. Photograph by Caine-Douglas)

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Nadya Jary joins Pinewood Studios Group as Group Brand Director

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Pinewood Studios Group is pleased to announce that Nadya Jary will be joining the Company on the 1 December 2015 as Group Brand Director.

Nadya is currently the Head of Integrated Brand Partnerships EMEA at The Walt Disney Company.

Prior to joining Disney in 2011 Nadya held senior roles in marketing and partnership development at 20th Century Fox, Universal Pictures International and MGM.

Ivan Dunleavy, Chief Executive, Pinewood Group plc said “The Pinewood brand has been iconic in the creative industries for over 80 years. As the brand continues to grow internationally new commercial opportunities present themselves and I am pleased that Nadya is joining us to explore those possibilities as well as strengthening the Pinewood reputation.”

Nadya Jary said “Pinewood is truly one of the great brands with a rich heritage and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to further develop its brand strategy.  I am looking forward to exploring new commercial opportunities that will ensure that the brand continues to go from strength to strength. 

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Gamesco aims to be a new kind of PC and console games publisher

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  • Gamesco founded by industry veteran Rob Ollett, previously of Jagex and Bigpoint, with big plans to make multiplayer and connected titles for PC and console
  • Gamesco bringing a ‘networked’ approach to publishing by outsourcing development to established studios, reducing the cost of infrastructure and staffing overheads that affects many game companies
  • Gamesco is the first videogames publisher to be founded and based on the Isle of Man

Officially emerging today after a year of planning and hard work, PC and console games publisher Gamesco (www.gamesco.com) joins the UK’s burgeoning games industry as its latest member. Gamesco aims to bring a new approach to the business of publishing games. Backed by significant initial investment, Gamesco’s focus is on creating big, brilliant and engaging online and massively multiplayer games based around iconic brands and original IP. With several as-yet unannounced games already in development, Gamesco plans to announce its first titles before the end of 2015.

Founded and led by Rob Ollett, veteran of hugely successful game companies including Jagex and Bigpoint, Gamesco plans to evolve the traditionally top-heavy approach that has become typical of most publishers. Instead, Ollett sees Gamesco as a ‘networked’ publisher, using a partnership-led approach to match each IP with the best developer for that particular game from a network of independent studios around the world, taking advantage of the world-class technical infrastructure offered by the Isle of Man. This means that Gamesco can work on creating and launching multiple titles at once, and allows for a much more decentralized, flexible and nimble approach – where the developers are left to do what they do best. As CEO, Ollett is supported by an experienced and talented senior team drawn from the videogames, TV and visual effects industries.

“The idea behind Gamesco is to make brilliant, connected games that deliver immersive online experiences – whether that’s our own original IP or a really interesting brand, “ said Ollett. “I believe the future of games is in creating these story-driven, communal experiences, with games becoming bigger, deeper and turning into fan-driven communities in their own right. By setting ourselves up as a networked publisher we are nimble and efficient enough to find the best developers around the world to bring these worlds to life, keeping overheads low and putting the maximum focus on creating a great product.”

Gamesco has worked closely with a range of Isle of Man investors, the Isle of Man Government and also with Pinewood Pictures, part of Pinewood Group plc. Equity raised from the various investors to develop and publish the first four games titles amounts to over $5m. Development of a videogames industry in the Isle of Man is seen as a logical step, with the Government’s Minister for Economic Development Laurence Skelly MHK saying:

“For Gamesco to be the first videogames company here is really exciting. The Island is an ideal operational base, given its status as an international hub for e-gaming. I welcome Rob Ollett and his team who join a growing number of high quality providers within our wider e-Business sector that have been attracted to the world class business environment and benefits that the Isle of Man offers.”

“It’s fantastic that Pinewood has been able to work with the team at Gamesco and the government of the Isle of Man to support the growth of the games and entertainment industry on the island,” said Robert Norris, Commercial Director of Pinewood Pictures. “With several exciting online games in the works – including some with strong brand partnerships – Gamesco is a great addition to the other companies based on the island.”

Courtney Noble Headshot

Courtney Noble joins Pinewood Pictures as Head of Acquisition and Development

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Courtney Noble has today (26 October 2015) joined Pinewood Pictures as its new Head of Acquisition and Development, ahead of November’s AFM, building on her experience at Goldcrest where she arrived from Fortissimo Films.

Robert Norris, Commercial Director at Pinewood Pictures said:

“We are delighted to have Courtney joining the team to help us both develop and acquire great film and television projects, for the Isle of Man, Wales and Pinewood. She combines commercial acumen with creativity and collaborative contribution to development and will be a superb addition to the team.”

On joining the Pinewood Pictures team Courtney commented:

“Pinewood has a vast array of production finance solutions, sector leading facilities and an unrivalled brand. Combine this with their long history of supporting talent; it is a compelling offering for filmmakers and content creators globally. I can’t wait to get started.”

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Pressure – Trailer and Poster Launch

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For your viewing pleasure the trailer and poster for PRESSURE have been released!

Danny Huston and Matthew Goode star in the this underwater thriller.  With their diving bell damaged, rescue uncertain, and oxygen depleting, a group of deep sea saturation divers are forced to work together to fight for their survival and find a way back to the surface.

PRESSURE is released exclusively in Empire cinemas August 21st, available to download from August 24th, and on DVD August 31st.

For more information, and to check out the trailer and poster, head on over to IGN!

Spooks: The Greater Good – Moments Worth Paying For Ad

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Pinewood Pictures are proud to present our Spooks: The Greater Good partnership with the Industry Trust for their Moments Worth Paying for campaign.

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In a bespoke advert featuring Spooks: The Greater Good stars Peter Firth and Kit Harington, Pinewood Pictures and the Industry Trust have combined forces to promote the best way of watching the big screen.

Watch the ad below and catch it in your local cinema over the coming four weeks!

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Pinewood Pictures Strikes Slate Deal with 20th Century Fox

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Pinewood Pictures, which finance and distribute the media investments of the Pinewood Studios Group, announced today that it has signed a deal with 20th Century Fox, that will see films on its distribution slate booked into cinemas by the studio.

SPOOKS: THE GREATER GOOD, starring Kit Harington, the movie based on the BBC hit show, is a key picture on the slate, and its release date is announced today as 8th May 2015. Ron Scalpello’s PRESSURE, starring Danny Huston, Matthew Goode and Joe Cole, will also feature in the deal and further films in the slate will be announced in due course.

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