Backup Films launches fund for acquisitions

French agency inks with Le Pacte for five-pic slate

PARIS -- French film-financing agency Backup Films has launched a fund to act as an acquisition partner for European independent distributors, striking an initial agreement on a five-film slate with Gallic distributor Le Pacte.

Called Districup, the new fund is backed by private investment capital, Backup founding partner Olivier Aknin said Thursday. It will co-acquire distribution rights alongside independent distributors and recoup its money against receipts.

"The scheme shares exploitation risk with distributors, enabling them to keep full control of the career of their films, as well as the opportunity to own all of the co-acquired rights after first exploitation cycle," Aknin said.

"We're looking to European distributors, aiming at the independent sector and director-driven movies," Aknin added.

Funding is available for development, production and for completed films -- it also extends to P&A financing.

The deal with Le Pacte, the new company set up by former Bac Films principal Jean Labadie, will involve about €1.5 million ($2.1 million) spread across the five as-yet unannounced titles, of which Districup will put up roughly half.

Paris-based Backup Films has been acting as film project packager and investment funds manager for the past six years, notably managing two French tax write-off funds.