the world digest


Remstar eyes dist'n

TORONTO — Montreal-based producer Remstar Corp. has launched itself into movie distribution with backing from a pair of Quebec pension funds. Remstar said Monday that the Quebec Federation of Labor's Solidarity Fund and the Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec will each contribute CAN$5 million ($4.7 million) to the launch of Remstar Media Partners as a new Quebec movie distributor. Remstar co-founder Maxime Remillard did not specify the dollar value of the investment but said that Remstar Media Partners will acquire the distribution rights to about 25 movies, mostly Canadian, over a five-year period.

Watanabe takes field

TOKYO — Dai Watanabe, son of "Letters From Iwo Jima" star Ken Watanabe, is following in his father's footsteps, taking the lead role in a World War II-era movie. Filming is under way in the Japanese prefecture of Nagano on "Saigo no Soukeisen," the tale of two rival university baseball teams playing their final match before being sent to war. Dai Watanabe's credits include the 2005 hit "Yamato," about the sinking of Japan's WWII super-battleship, and "For Those We Love," an unashamedly nationalistic movie depicting the last days of a kamikaze unit.

CBC's Chalmers out

TORONTO — Management changes at the Canadian Broadcasting Corp. continued Monday with news that Jane Chalmers, the public broadcaster's head of radio, is retiring. Chalmers will leave the CBC on Dec. 31. She first joined the public broadcaster in 1984 as an on-air host, before climbing the executive ranks. In an internal note to CBC employees, Chalmers said her pending departure was part of a "major midlife redesign" prompted in part by recent deaths in her family.