Vice Media is teaming up with 20th Century Fox to launch Vice Films, a joint venture that is to develop, produce and distribute work from emerging directors drawn from the Vice network.
Each company will contribute resources to the label, with plans to produce at least two films internally each year. According to a release, Fox will bring “its best-in-class global film development, production and distribution capabilities in all media,” while Vice will oversee the creative development and global marketing, and contribute its international network of digital channels.
Vice previously co-produced the skateboarding doc All This Mayhem and the narrative film Fishing Without Nets, and is also distributing the forthcoming Iranian drama A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night. It is unclear at present whether further non-fiction film projects will be part of the new initiative in addition to narrative work.
As part of the projected distribution model, the films are to receive both theatrical and digital releases. Moreover, Vice will have a first-look production deal with 20th Century Fox that will allow the company to develop “larger budgeted films.” Similarly, Fox will also be able to develop material based on Vice’s library of content.
The label is said to be the “brainchild” of 20th Century Fox chairman and CEO Jim Gianopulos, Vice CEO Shane Smith and chief creative officer Eddy Moretti, though it will be Moretti who will head Vice Films.
Meanwhile, Vice executive creative director Danny Gabai will helm development and oversee creative on production and marketing, while Sanford Panitch, president of Fox International Productions, and Salil Mehta, president of content management, will oversee Vice Films for 20th Century Fox.
“Vice Films is the beginning of an exciting new chapter for Vice,” said Moretti in a statement. “The success of Fishing Without Nets, A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night, and All This Mayhem showed us that we can play a vital role supporting exciting, bold, and visionary filmmaking.
“In partnership with Jim and his excellent team at Fox, we will build a new global home for cinematic creativity, supporting filmmakers from development to distribution, and creating a new business model for the industry along the way,” the exec continued. “But at the heart of this partnership is our love of cinema; Vice is committed to the enduring artistic and cultural relevance of the two-hour narrative.”
Gianopulos added: “Vice is a bold, groundbreaking new media company that allows us to reach an audience that is focused online and consumes its news and entertainment across many media platforms. Vice not only knows how to reach that audience but markets to them better than anyone else out there.”