Filmax goes Wide with new pact

Two-year deal inked with new distributor

CANNES -- Spanish mini-studio Filmax has announced a two-year distribution pact with freshly launched distributor Wide Pictures, headed by Luis de Val, the former head of Manga Films.

The accord will see Filmax handle distribution in Spain for such titles as Cannes closing-night film "What Just Happened?" and James Mangold's "3:10 to Yuma," starring Russell Crowe, Christian Bale and Peter Fonda.

"I'm convinced this deal will produce great success in the future, not only because of the quality of the films, but because of the synergy and professionalism of both companies," Filmax president Julio Fernandez said.

De Val stepped down in January from his post atop mainstream distributor Manga Films, a branch of the Vertice 360 conglomerate.

With about $30 million earmarked for purchasing, Wide has picked up 25 films, mostly star-driven U.S. fare that De Val hopes can compete with studio product.