SOURCE: RLJ Entertainment

RLJ Entertainment

May 15, 2013 17:04 ET

Image Entertainment Acquires Hannibal Classics' Tokarev Starring Nicolas Cage

CANNES, FRANCE--(Marketwired - May 15, 2013) - Image Entertainment, an RLJ Entertainment (NASDAQ: RLJE) brand, has acquired all US and Canadian rights to Hannibal Classics' new action-thriller Tokarev, starring Nicolas Cage.  Tokarev (working title) is scheduled for release in the first quarter of 2014. The deal was announced today by Image Entertainment's Chief Acquisitions Officer, Bill Bromiley.

"We are excited to add this action-thriller to our slate next year," said Bromiley. "Nicolas Cage elevates the film to new heights, reaching a wider audience not only domestically but internationally as well."

Tokarev begins physical production in Alabama in June. Hannibal Classics' sales division will handle worldwide sales and will be selling the film in Cannes.

"Our experience with Image Entertainment has always been positive," says Hannibal Classics' CEO and Tokarev Producer, Richard Rionda Del Castro. "The commitment of their key executives to aggressively distribute Hannibal Classics and Hannibal Pictures' films makes us all winners. We are thrilled they have teamed with us once again and with equal dedication to Tokarev."

Tokarev marks Spanish Director Paco Cabezas' American debut. Final casting is underway. Joining Rionda Del Castro as Producer is Michael Mendelsohn. Executive Producers are Nicolas Cage, Patricia Eberle, Mike Nilon, Hayley Magouirk, Jim Agnew, Sean Keller, Cam Cannon, Martin J. Barab and Frederico Lapenda.

Tokarev tells the story of Paul Maguire (Cage), a former criminal in search of his daughter's kidnappers. 

The deal was negotiated by Bromiley, Mark Ward and Michael Bayer on behalf of Image Entertainment and on behalf of Hannibal Classics by Rionda Del Castro and Martin J. Barab of Hamrick & Evans, LLP.

Tokarev is being financed by Union Patriot Capital Management, LLC., a film finance company with a large lending capacity, and produced by Michael Mendelsohn who was the former head of BNP Paribas Entertainment Media Group which specialized in financing motion pictures such as Reservoir Dogs, Red Rock West, Air Force One, Underworld, Analyze This, What Women Want, and Lord of War, which also starred Nicolas Cage.

About RLJ Entertainment

RLJ Entertainment, Inc. (NASDAQ: RLJE) is a premier independent licensee and distributor of entertainment content and programming in North America, the United Kingdom and Australia with over 5,200 exclusive titles. RLJE is a leader in numerous genres via its owned and distributed brands such as Acorn (British TV), Image (stand-up comedy, feature films), One Village (urban), Acacia (fitness), Slingshot (faith), Athena (educational), Criterion (art films) and Madacy (gift sets). These titles are distributed in multiple formats including DVD, Blu-Ray, digital download, digital streaming, broadcast television (including satellite and cable), theatrical and non-theatrical.

Via its majority-owned subsidiary Agatha Christie Limited, RLJE manages the intellectual property and publishing rights to some of the greatest works of mystery fiction, including stories of the iconic sleuths Miss Marple and Poirot. And through its direct-to-consumer business, RLJE has direct contacts and billing relationships with millions of consumers.

RLJE leverages its management experience to acquire, distribute, and monetize existing and original content for its many distribution channels, including its nascent branded digital subscription channels, and engages distinct audiences with programming that appeals directly to their unique viewing interests. RLJE has proprietary e-commerce web sites for the Acorn and Acacia brands, and owns the recently launched Acorn TV digital subscription service.

About Hannibal Classics

Hannibal Classics, founded in 2010 by Richard Rionda Del Castro, specializes in the financing and distribution of Feature Length Theatrical Motion Pictures with budgets above $20 Million.

Hannibal Classics has several films in pre-production, including the heart-pounding WWII epic USS Indianapolis: Men of Courage, the action-packed Red Squad, the survival adventure Beneath the Deep, the buddy-action-thriller Into the Black and the action film Escobar. Hannibal Classics will also soon make its first foray into animated films with and the action-adventure Resistance, based on the worldwide bestselling Sony Playstation video game.

About Union Patriot Capital, Inc. and Patriot Pictures, LLC.:

Union Patriot Capital, Inc. and [Fund Manager, CEO - Entertainment and Media Portfolio] Patriot Pictures, LLC. [CEO and Producer] Mr. Michael Mendelsohn currently manages a senior debt fund of $250 million for film production project finance. Mr. Mendelsohn is a lead advisor in negotiating content library acquisitions and valuations, and the sale and acquisition of entertainment properties for international television conglomerates. During his career, Mr. Mendelsohn has structured and placed over $3.8 billion in senior debt for such banks as, BNP Paribas (media and entertainment), Citibank (entertainment), Union Bank of California (entertainment) and JPMorgan (sports).

As a Banker and advisor, he has arranged over $1.8 billion in film project production financing or foreign distribution and co-production deals for such entertainment companies Lakeshore Entertainment (Paramount), Beacon Communications (Universal Pictures), Icon Productions (Paramount), and Patriot Pictures (MGM, Lions Gate, Warner Bros.) In addition, Mr. Mendelsohn advises corporate clients in areas of acquisition of entertainment properties, film production finance, international distribution, corporate sponsored programming, foreign television and satellite broadcasters, international co-production funds, theatre chains, commercial and music video production and digital production businesses and live shows.

Contact Information

  • Image Entertainment Contact:
    Katrina Wan
    Katrina Wan PR
    Email Contact

    Hannibal Classics Contact:
    Elizabeth Wolfe
    EWOLFE Public Relations
    +1 818.371.0697
    Email Contact