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Mar Vista Entertainment Launched

Whamo Ents partners Joseph Szew, Fernando Szew and Mar Gaya, along with PorchLight Ents Michael Jacobs and Anchor Bay Ents George Port, have formed Mar Vista Entertainment, reported DAILY VARIETY. The new company will produce and distribute family and children's productions. Joseph Szew will serve as president/ceo and his brother will be managing director. Based in Barcelona, Gaya will be the director of European operations. Jacobs, former svp of worldwide sales for PorchLight, will serve as president of production and distribution. Port, former founder and ceo of Anchor Bay Ent., will hold an evp post.

Already the new firm has acquired the rights to the Canadian TV series TOM STONE and the hour-long special A VERY WOMPKEE CHRISTMAS. Mar Vista will hold all non-Canadian rights to the 26 hour-long episodes of CBCs STONE, which will be titled STONE UNDERCOVER outside of Canada. The series follows an ex-con and a female prosecutor that team up to uncover crimes. For the CGI WOMPKEE, Mar Vista has obtained the worldwide TV rights. The special will be released by Sony on DVD and video at the end of the year.

Whamo Ents current business will be incorporated into the new entity. The firm owns 3,000 hours of TV shows and 40 animated features. The new company will have locations in the U.S. in Los Angeles and Boston.

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Rick DeMott
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