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New U.K. Distributor: New Sparta Acquires and Re-launches Icon Film Distribution

Photo of Carlos Aguilar By Carlos Aguilar | SydneysBuzz October 15, 2013 at 8:30AM

Icon U.K. Group CEO Aviv Giladi and the founder of New Sparta Ltd, Dr Jerome Booth recently announced that New Sparta has acquired Icon Film Distribution (IFD), the U.K. distribution operation of Icon U.K. Group, in association with a management team led by Ian Dawson, Chief Executive Officer, and Norman Humphrey, Executive Chairman and Chief Operating Officer.This purchase will allow IFD to once again acquire films for all media, and work with existing and new partners in successful campaigns for their material. Some of the titles include those released by IFD during its output deal Lionsgate and the U.K. library.
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IFD UK Title 'Only God Forgives'
IFD UK Title 'Only God Forgives'

Icon U.K. Group CEO Aviv Giladi and the founder of New Sparta Ltd, Dr Jerome Booth recently announced that New Sparta has acquired Icon Film Distribution (IFD), the U.K. distribution operation of Icon U.K. Group, in association with a management team led by Ian Dawson, Chief Executive Officer, and Norman Humphrey, Executive Chairman and Chief Operating Officer.This purchase will allow IFD to once again acquire films for all media, and work with existing and new partners in successful campaigns for their material. Some of the titles include those released by IFD during its output deal Lionsgate and the U.K. library.

This acquisition deal also includes Icon Home Entertainment (U.K.), and as part of the new management agreement, IFD will have access to future funding through New Sparta for the acquisition of film distribution rights and P+A finance.

Among the changes taking place through this acquisition Ian Dawson will take up the position of Chief Executive Officer at IFD and Norman Humphrey is joining IFD as Executive Chairman and Chief Operating Officer. The existing IFD team formed by Head of Theatrical Zak Brilliant, Head of Home Entertainment Ray Primett and Operations Manager Sarah Brady will be augmented by a number of key individuals to be announced over the coming months. Finally Dr Booth will join Ian Dawson and Norman Humphrey on the board of Icon Film Distribution

Here is what some of the key executives in the purchase had to say about the new partnership:

Dr Jerome Booth, New Sparta founder adds; “I am delighted that New Sparta is adding IFD to its growing group of media related companies.  IFD is a successful, well established and respected film distribution company and we very much look forward to working with Ian and Norman to build this business into the U.K.’s premier distribution company of choice for high quality and commercially successful film production companies.”

Icon

New IFD CEO, Ian Dawson adds: "We will re-establish Icon Film Distribution as a truly independent U.K. film company with a talented, passionate team working closely with film makers to bring quality, distinctive material to U.K. audiences.  Dr Booth, through New Sparta, is demonstrating a real commitment to the U.K. film industry and this makes them the ideal partner to help us to successfully deliver on our exciting plans."

Aviv Giladi, CEO of Icon U.K. Group, adds: “We are delighted that New Sparta has acquired the Icon UK distribution business to add to its media portfolio whilst we at Icon UK Group continue to focus on our growing film finance and production slate.”

IFD UK titles, some of which will be, or have recently been released via its Lionsgate output deal, include the big screen debut for Postman Pat in Postman Pat: The Movie featuring the voices of Stephen Mangan, David Tennant and Rupert Grint, Nicolas Winding Refn’s Only God Forgives starring Ryan Gosling and Kristin Scott Thomas, horror sensation You’re Next and the forthcoming thriller from the director of The Conjuring, James Wan, Demonic starring Maria Bello.

Lee Daniels The Butler

Icon UK Group, led by CEO Aviv Giladi, is currently co-financing and co-producing several international features through its production arm, Len Blavatnik’s AI Film. Its first project, Lee Daniels’ The Butler, starring Forest Whitaker and Oprah Winfrey, topped the US box office for three weeks and has grossed over $100 million to date.

AI Film recently announced the Sherlock Holmes mystery A Slight Trick of the Mind at the Toronto International Film Festival to be directed by Oscar®winner Bill Condon and starring Ian McKellen, Martin Scorsese’s Silence which is set to next year, and Rocketman, the spectacular musical event film chronicling the journey of pop music legend Elton John.

On the transaction, New Sparta was represented by Harbottle and Lewis; Icon UK Group was represented by Olswang; and Ian Dawson and Norman Humphrey were represented by Lee & Thompson.


This article is related to: New Sparta , Icon Film Distribution , International Film Market, International Film Business, International Sales Agent, International Film Festival, Lionsgate, Lee Daniels' The Butler , Only God Forgives, You're Next

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