Leon Joosen and Aaron Seelman's 'Saving Santa'
Leon Joosen and Aaron Seelman's 'Saving Santa'

Edward Noeltner has been a friend of ours in and out of 'the business' (as those of us who work in it tend to call it) for many years now. Our families know each other and we have been on many nice social occasions to each other's homes.

Thus we have a lovely personal connection to this great film guy.

So it is with impressed awe that we have watched his company expand and continue to represent great and important films.

Edward was born in New Jersey and moved at one year of age to Munich, Germany. His dad was Head of Radio Liberty, a US government sponsored radio station that beamed US government propaganda (let's call it that) to the countries of the (then large and active and now gone) Soviet Union.

He lived in Munich West Germany, and on September 4, 1972 attended the Olympic Games there. He describes it like this. 'The atmosphere that day was very free spirited and lively in the Olympic Village. Then the next day - massacre.' On September 5, 1972 disaster struck the Olympics. The sporting nature of which was largely overshadowed by the Munich massacre in which eleven Israeli athletes and coaches, a West German police officer, and five Palestinian Black September militants were killed.

CMG's Edward Noeltner
CMG's Edward Noeltner

He left Germany in 1973. But he had grown up at his father's workplace, and knew radio production and and often hung out at the Munich station. From Germany he moved to Arizona where he attended high school in Tucson. He worked there at radio and TV stations in the newsroom of the local CBS affiliate. 'I fell naturally into this as I had developed such a love of radio and news as a boy'.

He remembers the great Fellini film 8 1/2 particularly arousing his interest in film and especially European cinema.

In Tucson he began to habituate their great (and still thriving) arthouse cinema The Loft.

He entered the University of Arizona / Tucson to get a degree from theDepartment handling Radio TV Film Drama. 'I was very close to getting my Master's there when I left'.

He decided then to move to USC instead to get a Masters Degree and was there from 1980-84.

It was there he met his wife who also studied there, the French national Marie Christine. In 1984 they moved to Paris.

He first worked for Europe Export Films and stayed with them for 7 years. In 1994 he started Senator International in Berlin and stayed until 1996.

He then moved on to Pandora Cinema of Paris where we first met him when he worked there with Ernst Goldschmidt and Sudy Coy.

Edward Noeltner
Edward Noeltner

In 1998 Pandora was sold to Gaylord Entertainment (which Edward describes as 'a mainstream company').

In 1999 Svensk of Copenhagen offered him a good job opportunity. They had a nice library of 40 plus film titles.

He came as they had just gotten Faithless, based on an Ingmar Bergmann script and directed by the great Bergman actress Liv Ulman. Edward says, 'Big success. It sold everywhere and was in the Cannes Film Festival Official Selection'.

Edward also had an Oscar Nomination there with Under the Sun by Colin Nutley.

In 2001 he accepted a Miramax offer to become Head of Sales for the Weinstein brothers in New York. Chicago was just one of their great titles which had a very good run.

In 2003 he decided to move to LA and start his own sales company, Cinema Management Group / CMG. Off to a good start one of his first films, the animation Hoodwinked grossed $110 million worldwide.

Since 2003, CMG has added over 100 titles to its line-up which includes quality feature films of all genres, 3-D animated features and series as well as award winning feature length documentaries and series.

Over the past 25 years, Edward Noeltner has licensed some 16 Oscar nominated features (many of them Oscar winners) and has worked with some of the most creative individuals in the industry. Films like Scott Hick’s Shine, Carlos Saura’s Tango, Liv Ullmann’s Faithless, or Rob Marshall’s Chicago are just some of the many memorable feature films Noeltner has been associated with in terms of int’l sales.

Since its inception, CMG has been known for offering original, commercial properties. CMG co-executive producing the cult animated series "Happy Tree Friends" and licensed both DVD and Television rights to the series in over 40 int’l territories including the US and Canada. Today, CMG offers an array of exciting new 3-D Digital CGI animated features, all independently produced with amazing voice  talents such as Jeff Goldblum, Samuel L. Jackson, Abigail Breslin, Steve Buscemi, Laurence Fishburne and Liam Neeson along with some of the finest animators working in the business. CMG’s collaboration with Triggerfish Animation – Adventures In Zambezia– garnered over US$ 26million in its theatrical run with a number of major territories still to be released.

This AFM Edward and CMG are launching a mixed agenda of films and he is especially high on the thriller


This following company promo makes me want to see it: 


High octane from start to finish, Plastic is based on the incredible true story of a heist of one of Beverly Hills’ top jewelry merchants. Brilliant college student Sam has the perfect credit card scam…until his crew robs the wrong man. Now they have two weeks to repay ruthless gangster Marcel US$2 million or they will be dead. Sam and his team devise a scheme to clear their debt by heading to Miami to poach enough cash and merchandise. But they come up short. So Sam and his gang set their sights on a daring jewelry heist that could make them hugely wealthy for life. Their plan turns sour, however, when the team members start turning on each other. Now it’s up to Sam to finish the brazen heist and turn the tables on Marcel before they all go down.

CMG at AFM will also have the supernatural horror feature

The Hunted

The Hunted : In an attempt to land their own TV show, Jake (Josh Stewart) and Stevie (Ronnie Gene Blevins) head to the dense, secluded mountains of West Virginia. Equipped with only their bow and cameras, they have three days to kill a monster buck big enough to grab the attention of a TV network. Once they find the massive animal, they look to strike fast. But as the sun sets, they realize they're not alone. A supernatural force appears to be lurking in the vacant woods... and now they're the ones being hunted.

Always good on animation for the kiddies this coming holiday season Edward is selling

Saving Santa

Saving Santa 3D : At the top of the North Pole, Bernard is an elf in Santa’s workshop who’s always messing up. One morning, after sleeping in late, Santa kindly shows Bernard the oh-so-secret time machine on his sleigh, which almost no one knows about. Suddenly, Bernard finds army commandos raiding the North Pole, demanding to know the location of his coveted time machine. If the world were to discover the exact location and existence of the North Pole, it would ruin Christmas for everyone! Bernard runs to the time machine and activates the device, going back in time to that same morning. Now it’s a race against time to forge a plot with any elf that will believe his tale, and save Santa before the world finds out the secret of Christmas.


The Santa Story

The Santa Story: Inspired by Frank L. Baum’s timeless classic, take a magical 3D animated journey to uncover the true origins of the little boy named Nick who grew up to become Santa Claus. Set in his childhood village, join in Little Nick’s first real life adventures which teach him the gift of giving and the powerful spirit of community. As Nick grows up, he must confront his own self-doubts and bring everyone together to keep his old foe Rolf from taking over his village. With the help of two amazingly crafty elves, a majestic reindeer and a group of lovable orphans, Nick rebuilds his hometown and finally becomes the man we all know and love – Santa Claus.

Another kiddie animation film that looks great, about a half-striped zebra proving himself on the African plains


Khumba : When Khumba, a half-striped zebra is blamed for the lack of rain by the rest of his insular, superstitious herd, he embarks on a daring quest to earn his stripes. In his search for the legendary waterhole in which the first zebras got their stripes, Khumba meets a quirky range of characters, and teams up with an unlikely duo: an overprotective wildebeest, Mama V, and Bradley, a self-obsessed ostrich. But before he can reunite with his herd, Khumba will have to come face to face with Phango, a scary leopard who controls the waterholes and terrorizes all the animals in the Great Karoo.
It's not all black and white in this colorful adventure with a difference!

AFM will also see CMG's quality drama, the Barreto family Produced/ Directed

Reaching the Moon

Reaching for the Moon : Frustrated poet Elizabeth Bishop travels to Brazil and encounters the beguiling architect Lota de Macedo Soares. Initial hostilities make way for a complicated yet long-lasting love affair that dramatically alters Bishop’s relationship to the world around her. Anchored by magnificent lead performances from Miranda Otto and Gloria Pires, Reaching for the Moon is an intimate snapshot of the search for inspiration, wherever and however you find it

CMG also has quality documentaries like Rob Stewart's ambitious feature that tours the planet with an inspiring and beautiful ecological message about saving our world.


Revolution : Continuing his adventurous journey around the world, filmmaker Rob Stewart brings us Revolution, a full length feature film that is inspiring humans to change the world and save our planet. Along with world renowned experts, he learns that past evolutions can help solve some of our current and future environmental problems. Startling, beautiful, and provocative, Revolution has already won awards at international film festivals and shows us that we can make a difference.

For more information on CMG and its titles visit HERE