Montreal's Muse opening L.A. office

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TORONTO -- Canadian film and TV producer Muse unveiled plans Wednesday to open a Los Angeles office led by veteran TV producer Joel Rice.

Montreal-based Muse said that Rice will oversee development of possible TV projects with U.S. networks and cable channels as president of newly created subsidiary Muse Entertainment Enterprises USA Inc.

Rice will be joined in the Los Angeles office by veteran producer Richard Joel, who is charged with reality TV series development.

"The time has come for us to have a strong presence in the vital Los Angeles market," Muse president and CEO Michael Prupas said.

Prupas added that the U.S. expansion comes as networks look to new financing models to fill their programming slates.

"We are now ready, with the addition of Rice, to expand those relationships, particularly in the current climate where networks have to stretch dollars," he said.

Muse is best known for telefilms like "Human Trafficking" for Lifetime, "Tales from the Neverending Story" for Hallmark and "Ice Bound" for CBS.

On the theatrical feature front, Muse has just completed production on "The Deal," which stars William H. Macy and Meg Ryan.
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