By MCN Editor editor@moviecitynews.com

Terry Press And Wolfgang Hammer Named Co-Presidents Of CBS Films

LOS ANGELES, April 23, 2012 — CBS Corporation announced today that Wolfgang Hammer and Terry Press have been named Co-Presidents of the CBS Films division.

“In Terry and Wolfgang, we are fortunate to have two very skilled executives, each with terrific knowledge of the business and strong resumes of innovation,” said Leslie Moonves, President and CEO of CBS Corporation, to whom they will report.  “They both possess the ‘roll-up-your-sleeves’ attitude for making, acquiring and marketing quality films for a division that is small in size, but laser-focused on assembling a mix of home-grown productions and acquisitions across a diverse range of genres. I look forward to the ongoing contributions they will make as they work together on all aspects of CBS Films to achieve our shared objective of developing great movies and growing this new part of our company.”

Terry Press, who has been consulting for the studio since 2010, will oversee creative, distribution, marketing and physical production for CBS Films. As the principal of 7570 Marketing Inc., she has consulted on several CBS Films releases including “The Mechanic,” “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen” and “The Woman in Black.”  Additionally, she has consulted on recent films such as “The Hunger Games,” “Julie & Julia,” “The Social Network,” “Hugo” and “Valkyrie.”  Prior to 7570, Press served as the head of marketing for DreamWorks SKG, where she oversaw the campaigns for all live-action and animated features including “Saving Private Ryan,” “American Beauty,” “Gladiator” and “Shrek.”

“Terry has been behind some of the biggest film campaigns of the past two decades,” added Moonves. “She is highly respected across the industry for her instincts, taste and ability to conceive and adapt campaigns for any film in any genre. We are thrilled that she will now be bringing her characteristic drive and creative energy to this new role at CBS.”

Wolfgang Hammer previously served as the Chief Operating Officer for CBS Films. He will oversee all business, finance, legal affairs and acquisitions, including financed, co-financed and completed projects for the division. As COO of CBS Films, he oversaw the acquisition of “The Woman in Black,” “Gambit” and “The Words,” as well as the co-financing and distribution deals for the upcoming Martin McDonagh film “Seven Psychopaths.” Prior to joining CBS Films, Hammer served as Executive Vice President of the Motion Picture Group at Lionsgate. Before Lionsgate, Hammer served as Vice President, Production, at Media Rights Capital. He is a graduate of the University of Vienna Law School and earned his master’s at Stanford University.

“Wolfgang is one of the brightest new stars in the industry,” said Moonves. “He is an aggressive and innovative dealmaker with terrific passion and talent for identifying the right film at the right time. Since the day he arrived, he has been an integral part of the division’s growth and forward momentum, and played an important role in developing a slate of filmmaker-driven titles that have great quality and financial upside. His intelligence, business acumen and deal-making skills will be a key part of our effort, as we move to build our film division in the years to come.”

The studio’s most recent wide release was the hit “The Woman in Black,” which garnered strong reviews and has delivered more than $54 million in domestic box office. More recently, the division opened “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen” in limited release to excellent notices and a strong $12,550 per screen average. CBS Films recently wrapped production on the multi-generational comedy “Get A Job,” starring Bryan Cranston (“Breaking Bad,” “Drive”), Miles Teller (“Footloose,” “Project X”) and Anna Kendrick (“Up In The Air,” “50/50″). This summer, the studio will release the horror thriller “7500,” followed later in the year by Martin McDonagh’s action comedy “Seven Psychopaths,” the romantic drama “The Words,” starring Bradley Cooper (“The Hangover,” “Limitless”) and Zoe Saldana (“Avatar,” “Star Trek”) and, in 2013, the Coen-brothers scripted “Gambit,” starring Colin Firth, Cameron Diaz and Alan Rickman.

About CBS Films
CBS Films is a division of CBS Corporation. CBS Films will release four to six movies a year, spanning all genres.  For more information, log on to www.cbsfilms.com.

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Tsangari: With my next film, White Knuckles, it comes with a budget — it’s going to be a huge new world for me. As always when I enter into a new thing, don’t you wonder how it’s going to be and how much of yourself you are going to have to sacrifice? The ballet of all of this. I’m already imaging the choreography — not of the camera, but the choreography of actually bringing it to life. It is as fascinating as the shooting itself. I find the producing as exciting as the directing. The one informs the other. There is this producer-director hat that I constantly wear. I’ve been thinking about these early auteurs, like Howard Hawks and John Ford and Preston Sturges—all of these guys basically were hired by the studio, and I doubt they had final cut, and somehow they had films that now we can say they had their signatures.  There are different ways of being creative within the parameters and limitations of production. The only thing you cannot negotiate is stupidity.
Filmmaker: And unfortunately, there is an abundance of that in the world.
Tsangari: This is the only big risk: stupidity. Everything else is completely worked out in the end.
~ Chevalier‘s Rachel Athina Tsangari

“The middle-range movies that I was doing have largely either stopped being made, or they’ve moved to television, now that television is a go-to medium for directors who can’t get work in theatricals, because there are so few theatricals being made. But also with the new miniseries concept, you can tell a long story in detail without having to cram it all into 90 minutes. You don’t have to cut the characters and take out the secondary people. You can actually put them all on a big canvas. And it is a big canvas, because people have bigger screens now, so there’s no aesthetic difference between the way you shoot a movie and the way you shoot a TV show.

“Which is all for the good. But what’s happened in the interim is that theatrical movies being a spectacle business are now either giant blockbuster movies that run three hours—even superhero movies run three hours, they used to run like 58 minutes!—and the others, which are dysfunctional family independent movies or the slob comedy or the kiddie movie, and those are all low-budget. So the middle ground of movies that were about things, they’re just gone. Or else they’re on HBO. Like the Bryan Cranston LBJ movie, which years ago would’ve been made for theaters.

“You’ve got people like Paul Schrader and Walter Hill who can’t get their movies theatrically distributed because there’s no market for it. So they end up going to VOD, and VOD is a model from which no one makes any money, because most of the time, as soon as they get on the site, they’re pirated. So the whole model of the system right now is completely broken. And whether or not anybody’s going to try to fix, or if it even can be fixed, I don’t know. But it’s certainly not the same business that I got into in the ’70s.”
~ Joe Dante

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