108 Media to release films in North America with Mark Urman’s Paladin

Former Cinesavvy managing director Abhi Rastogi finds a U.S. platform for his new distribution outfit and early titles like Sally El Hosaini's My Brother the Devil (pictured) and Alexandra Berger's Danland.

Canadian film sales and distribution outfit 108 Media has pacted with Paladin, the New York-based indie, to jointly distribute films in North America.

The new venture, unveiled ahead of the Toronto International Film Festival, will see Abhi Rastogi, the former managing director of film financier and sales company Cinesavvy Inc. partner with Paladin President Mark Urman to roll out an initial slate of five titles that 108 Media has earier acquired.

The companies will then jointly acquire new films, as they head to TIFF as a newly formed all-rights buyer.

“We always had Mark in mind as the ideal partner to do the films justice and help us plant a flag in the US,” Rastogi, CEO of 108 Media, said as he looks to expand into the U.S. market.

And for Urman, who knows the Canadian market after earlier stints at Lionsgate and ThinkFilm, bolting Paladin to 108 Media will allow the theatrical distributor to branch out into digital distribution.

108 Media’s ancillary arrangements includes a combination of direct and indirect deals with certain digital platforms.

“Thanks to Paladin and our new ancillary partners, we are now in a unique position to offer a full spectrum of services and a customized release strategy, both domestically and internationally, to a broad range of films and filmmakers worldwide,” Rastogi explained.

The first releases from the joint 108 Media/Paladin entity include Sally El Hosaini’s My Brother the Devil, Alexandra Berger’s Danland and Todd Kellstein’s Buffalo Girls, both docs that debuted at Slamdance, and Akan Satayev’s Myn Bala: Warriors of the Steppe and Leafie, by Korean director Seong-yun Oh.

Photo: My Brother the Devil