Nancy Kirkpatrick ascends at Summit

Paramount veteran was consulting for the studio

NEW YORK -- 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 such films as "The War of the Worlds" and "Save the Last Dance." She left the studio in February.

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

The company also picked up Kathryn Bigelow's war film "The Hurt Locker" at the Toronto International Film Festival and is aiming for a spring or summer release.

Kirkpatrick noted that Summit's mix of films offers "a big canvas on which to experiment and break new ground."