Annapurna Pictures has made several key additions to its film team, including a new executive vice president and head of film in Adam Paulsen.
Paulsen and his colleague Jack Parker are joining the indie prestige shop from Valparaiso Pictures. Parker has been hired as a creative executive. Both will report to Annapurna Chief Creative Officer Sue Naegle and Chief Operating Officer Chris Corabi. They join Annapurna’s director of film development Jess Biddle.
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The staffing up signals that Annapurna founder and CEO Megan Ellison is serious about reinvigorating her film division to its former glory. The executive and Oracle heiress herself just returned to Los Angeles from a lengthy quarantine hiatus, as Variety reported in April, and is strategizing anew.
Valparaiso is the studio behind Jerrod Carmichael’s “On the Count of Three,” the Sundance player that Ellison’s multimedia company acquired this year. They also have Nicolas Cage’s “Pig” debuting imminently via Neon, and were behind the documentary “A Glitch in the Matrix” from Magnolia Pictures.
As a result of the hires, Annapurna will inherit the majority of Valparaiso’s upcoming slate. Though specific projects were not immediately clear, their projects include a film about ’90s TV sensation “Barney” and a co-production on a Kumail Nanjiani feature called “No Glory.” Valparaiso founder David Carrico will remain attached to the transferred titles as executive producer.
While Annapurna had been committed to a joint distribution venture with MGM — called United Artists Releasing — the company is free to seek other partners, especially as MGM’s recent $9 billion sale to Amazon further complicates the JV’s future.
News of the hires was first reported by Deadline.
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