Vice Media-owned content studio Pulse Films has teamed with Access Industries’ indie finance and prodco AI Film to launch a new production fund.
The venture, titled PulsexAI, will serve as a full-service shop to annually develop, produce and fully finance two to three filmmaker-driven projects with budgets up to US$6 million.
The fund will look to identify and incubate the next generation filmmakers across all genres of film with an eye toward diverse cinematic projects with provocative and timely storytelling.
Leading the PulsexAI venture will be Pulse CEO and BAFTA-nominated producer Thomas Benski (pictured), award-winning producer Lars Knudsen (This Is Us) and AI Film’s Ben Giladi.
While the trio did not disclose specific projects, they pointed to the types of films they will look to cultivate, including Crystal Moselle‘s skateboarding feature Skate Kitchen, a Pulse film, which is premiering at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival in the NEXT section.
Financing for the fund will be underwritten by Access Industries, a privately held company founded in 1986 by entrepreneur Len Blavatnik. The company’s entertainment portfolio includes holding and ownership of such companies as Warner Music Group, AI Film, Deezer, Preform and RGE Group.
“We will have an appetite for risk, and will support our auteurs and their original voices through our ability to fully finance and bring our in-house resources and experience, shielding the project from the pressures of the current complicated marketplace,” said Pulse’s Benski in a statement. “Cinema is made of exceptions and we wanted to create a financing solution that truly reflects this.”
“It’s undeniable that the industry is undergoing a serious cultural, generational and economical change at the moment,” added AI Film’s Giladi. “We perceive this change as a blessed opportunity to bring back true power and focus to exceptional and bold directorial talents. I’m thrilled to team up with Thomas and Lars, with whom I share a deep creative understanding, to establish this new safe haven for the next generation of cinematic auteurs.”