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Cannes: VMI Worldwide Signs Middle East Distribution Deal With Phoenicia Pictures (EXCLUSIVE)

Variety logo Variety 5/24/2017 Robert Mitchell
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VMI Worldwide has entered into an exclusive long-term output agreement with Middle East region distributor Phoenicia Pictures International. The deal, announced in Cannes by VMI founder and president Andre Relis, builds on a relationship between the two companies dating back to VMI’s inception in 2010.

The agreement will see Phoenicia handle distribution across the Middle East for VMI Worldwide titles through its network of local distribution partners. Ameer Fawaz, president of Phoenicia Pictures, said the companies’ past collaborations had helped Phoenicia solidify its position in the region. “This new agreement is, for me, a guarantee of growth for years to come,” said Fawaz.

The first titles announced for the slate include upcoming Nicolas Cage sci-fi thriller “The Humanity Bureau” (pictured). Set in a dystopian near future in a permanent state of economic recession, “The Humanity Bureau” sees Cage play a caseworker for the eponymous government agency, which exiles “unproductive” members of society to a colony. The film is directed by Rob W. King and is currently in post-production.

“We are delighted to formalize our relationship with our partner Ameer Fawaz at Phoenicia Pictures,” said Relis. “They are world-class distributors who have done a wonderful job with our films in the Middle East and we are proud to bring the entirety of our diverse and commercially exciting slate to their established operation.”

Other titles announced include World War II drama “Wunderland,” starring Tom Berenger; fantasy film “Scales: Mermaids Are Real”; and swinger comedy drama “Palm Swings.”

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