Par vet Kirkpatrick ascends at Summit

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With its big fall release "Twilight" just two months away, Summit has beefed up its executive ranks with the hiring of Nancy Kirkpatrick as president of worldwide marketing.

The Paramount veteran had been consulting for the startup studio, but the hiring gives added heft to the company's marketing department, with Kirkpatrick conceiving and overseeing all campaigns for the studio's theatrical releases.

At Summit, Kirkpatrick will oversee a team of about 15 staffers; she reports to COO Bob Hayward but with an informal dotted line to co-toppers Rob Friedman, with whom Kirkpatrick worked at Paramount, and Patrick Wachsberger.

Kirkpatrick spent the past seven years on the Melrose lot, most recently as executive vp worldwide publicity, overseeing campaigns for films like "The War of the Worlds." She left the studio in February.

Summit plans on releasing 10-12 movies per year. Its biggest bet will be Catherine Hardwicke's adaptation of Stephenie Meyer's tween vampire sensation "Twilight," out Nov. 21; high-profile acquisition "The Brothers Bloom" follows about a month later.

The company also picked up Kathryn Bigelow's "The Hurt Locker" at the Toronto International Film Festival and is eyeing a spring or summer release. (partialdiff)
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