Rudnitsky Signs On for TWC As Weinsteins Set Release Slate
by Eugene Hernandez
As The Weinstein Company (TWC) locked its inaugural release slate this week, Bob and Harvey Weinstein named longtime distribution head Mike Rudnitsky as the senior executive vice president of domestic distribution for the new company. In his role he will oversee releases for TWC and its Dimension label. Earlier in the week, TWC confirmed that the company's first release after it launches on October 1st would be Mikael Håfström's "Derailed." A new name for the upstart independent company is expected to be unveiled this summer.
Rudnitsky has worked with the Weinsteins for 8 years at Miramax and will continue handling duties at Disney's specialty division on a non-exclusive basis through September 30th, when the Weinsteins contract expires.
"Mike has been a key to our box office success at Miramax and we look forward to continuing to work with him for many years to come," said Bob Weinstein in a statement, while Rudnitsky said in a statement, "I look forward to continuing to work with Bob and Harvey at their new venture -- I am very excited about The Weinstein Company's upcoming releases we just announced and am confident of the new company's future success."
The Weinstein Company's first release, coming October 21, 2005, is Mikael Håfström's thriller "Derailed" with Clive Owen and Jennifer Aniston. It is a co-production with Walt Disney Studios and is set for a wide release. Next up on November 18th will be the Dimension Films wide release of Greg McLean's "Wolf Creek" Australian horror film, which screened this month at the Cannes Film Festival and was acquired by the Weinsteins at Miramax shortly before its debut at the Sundance Film Festival.
The first exclusive release from TWC will be Richard Shepard's black-comedy "The Matador" with Greg Kinnear and Hope Davis. Also co-financed by Disney, the film was nabbed by Miramax at Sundance this year after its world premiere. The limited release will kick-off on November 18th and expand after that.
Mike Rudnitsky joined Miramax Films in 1997. He began his career at Columbia Pictures in 1976, also working at 20th Century Fox, Triton Films and Cannon Pictures.
[ The complete release slate for The Weinstein Company is available on the indieWIRE Insider blog. ]