Producer Joni Sighvatsson buys 75% of Scanbox
by Annika Pham
03/01/2006 - Danish based Scanbox Entertainment, one of the leading distribution companies in the Nordic region, announced yesterday that the Icelandic born Hollywood producer Joni Sighvatsson has acquired 75% of the company, with the former owners Verner Bach Pedersen and the management team keeping the remaining 25%.
During his past 25 years in Los Angeles, Sigurjon 'Joni' Sighvatsson has produced over 40 films and TV series including David Lynch’s 1990 Palme d’or winner Wild At Heart produced by Propaganda Films (which he co-founded) or Arlington Road. For his current company Palomar Pictures, he produces big Hollywood films like K-19: The Widowmaker, as well as smaller productions such as Icelandic filmmaker Baltasar Kormákur’s first English-language film A Little Trip To Heaven. From his Hollywood headquarters, Sighvatsson has in fact always continued to support the Icelandic film industry and many Icelandic films - including A Little trip To Heaven -, films which are sold internationally by L.A.-based Katapult Films set up in 2004 by Sighvatsson and former Trust Film Sales executive Thomas Mai.
Commenting on the Scanbox acquisition, Sighvatsson said: "Scanbox is an excellent company with a strong film library and a solid management team which all will continue in their present positions. Its recent focus on special products, as well as local and high class international movies makes it well positioned to become a leading distributor in all forms of media in the fast-changing film distribution entertainment environment".
The 25-year old Scanbox has distribution operations in Denmark – run in partnership with Angel Films -, Norway, Sweden and Finland. The company’s strategy is to distribute quality international films (such as Terry George’s Hotel Rwanda [trailer, film focus] or the animated film Valiant), as well as local productions. In Denmark, Scanbox’s relaunch of the classic film series Far til Fire (Father of Four) has turned into gold, as Claus Bjerre’s feature film is now the biggest local hit of 2005 with 500,000 admissions. Thanks notably to the other local success Nynne by Jonas Elmer (400,000 admissions), the Scanbox/Angel partnership will hold close to 30% of the local Danish box office in 2005.