(May 22, 2002 -- Burbank, CA) - Warner Bros. Pictures is expanding its European production and acquisitions team as it moves into Italy furthering its initiative to build a significant presence in local-language production, it was announced today by Lorenzo di Bonaventura, President, Worldwide Production, Warner Bros. Pictures and Richard Fox, Executive Vice President, International, Warner Bros. Crisilde Dominici has been appointed Director, Local Production, Italy, Warner Bros. Pictures. Dominici, who joined the company in March, has worked with such notable Italian directors as Nanni Moretti. Dominici will be working with and reporting to local General Manager, Paolo Ferrari and Vice President of European Productions, Simona Benzakein, in identifying suitable projects to produce for the Italian market. As recently announced, the first Warner Bros. Pictures’ co-production picture slated for Italy is Carlo Verdone’s “Ma Che Colpa Abbiamo Noi,” which is currently in production. Initial local-language production concentration was focused primarily in France and Germany, and the level of activity in these markets has gained added momentum with the recent successes of “La Verite Si Je Mens II,” “ Le Boulet” and “Little Polar Bear.” Warner Bros. Pictures plans to embark on a similar local production plan in Spain later this year. Simona Benzakein was appointed Vice President, European Productions in January 2001 as the first step in establishing a regional production presence. Over recent months, Warner Bros. Pictures has broadened the European, local-language management team, further solidifying the Studio’s commitment to the production of local language and content projects. David Brander, who has recently been promoted to Senior Vice President, International Operations for Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), will manage the European co-production effort from an operational point of view, carrying out this activity in conjunction to his current distribution operations duties. Adam Smith, who has been promoted to Director, Legal & Business Affairs of European Production joined the local-language management team on a dedicated basis earlier this year. Smith will carry the overall responsibility for coordinating all business affairs for Warner Bros. Pictures’ European production and acquisition activity. The regional team is rounded out by Mike Kelly in the role of Director of International Finance, European Productions. Kelly, who joined Warner Bros. Pictures in August 2001, will be responsible for the financial management of the European co-production efforts.
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