John Battsek Exits Passion Pictures to Launch Ventureland

2012-04 REP DEALS Searching For Sugar Man H
Hal Wilson

Competition documentaries "Searching for Sugar Man," about a quest to find out what happened to an elusive rock star, and "The Queen of Versailles," found buyers at Sony Classics and Magnolia Pictures, respectively, both in mid-six-figure deals.

The 'Searching for Sugar Man' producer will be joined by Kerstin Emhoff, Ali Brown and Paul Hunter of indie Prettybird.

Oscar-winning producer John Battsek (One Day in September, Searching for Sugar Man) has left Passion Pictures after two decades to help launch Ventureland as a Los Angeles and London-based film and TV company.

Kerstin Emhoff, Ali Brown and Paul Hunter of indie producer Prettybird are also behind Ventureland. a multiplatform producer of content across the documentary and scripted spaces.

"Over the past decade of collaboration I have admired Kerstin's leadership, drive and ambition and I am thrilled to now be partnering with her and the Ventureland team," Battsek said in a statement.

Battsek and Emhoff produced Manhunt: the Inside Story of the Hunt for Bin Laden and The Tillman Story. Emhoff, Brown and Hunter at Prettybird have a roster of talent that includes Melina Matsoukas, Tim & Eric, The Daniels and Janicza Bravo.

Battsek co-founded Passion Pictures Films in 1999 with Andrew Ruhemann and together they also produced documentaries like Restrepo and Winter on Fire.