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Gaumont Announces New Executive Hires to Lead European Expansion

Karen Vermeulen and Cyril Le Pesant join company to bolster development and strategic partnerships in London and Paris Offices.

LOS ANGELES/PARIS – Gaumont has announced the hire of Karen Vermeulen and Cyril Le Pesant, confirming the expansion of its global animation and family efforts in Europe. The film and production company’s work includes the award-winning series, Narcos; the upcoming animated series for Amazon Prime, Do, Re & Mi starring Kristen Bell (Frozen) and Jackie Tohn (Glow), and High in the Clouds, an animated feature developed with Paul McCartney for Netflix.

Vermeulen has been appointed to the role of SVP, global co-production, financing & business development, based in Gaumont’s London offices. She will assume her new role in August. Her addition is part of the company’s commitment to create and foster strategic partnerships worldwide as they continue to bolster their animation and family slate across all genres. She will be working closely with Terry Kalagian, SVP, creative development, animation & family, and her team, handling funding models/partners for the current development slate and to identify new co-production projects and future opportunities. Courtney Arumugam, VP, creative development, also based in London, will report to Vermeulen and continue to develop and produce out of the UK.

Cyril Le Pesant joined the company in May as Gaumont Animation, Paris’ head of animation & family. He will work with the animation and family teams in the US and UK across the sourcing of IP, co-productions, development, and production with a primary focus on running the Paris based studio which will report directly to him.

“I can’t begin to express how thrilled we are to have both Karen & Cyril join the Gaumont team,” commented president of animation & family, Nicolas Atlan. “I’ve known Karen for many years and I’ve always wanted to work with her, and Cyril’s energy and passion makes him a perfect fit for our team. Together they bring a new level of creative expertise and technical skills which will further add to the momentum Gaumont continues to build across Europe and around the world. Both will work closely with Terry Kalagian, our SVP of creative development, and her talented team.”

Both Vemeulan and Le Pesant will report to Atlan.

“I am absolutely thrilled to join Nicolas at long last, and his amazingly talented team,” remarked Vermeulen. “I am very excited by the diverse development slate, and to be a part of putting together the jigsaw puzzle to drive more global co-productions.”

“I am very happy and proud to join Gaumont, the company whose Marguerite (Daisy) logo rocked my childhood,” added Le Pesant. “I am also delighted to work with Nicolas Atlan and Terry Kalagian and their entire team who have done an extraordinary job over the last four years.  This is a very exciting time at Gaumont animation & family, and I feel so lucky to have been given this opportunity. With so many projects already in production in addition to a robust development slate, we are on an incredible path.”

Vermeulen most recently served at the UK office of Cloudco Entertainment as head of global content strategy & co-production, in addition to managing director, where she oversaw the financing and distribution and served as executive producer.

Le Pesant was co-founder and CEO of KNIGHTWORKS, a Paris-based production, animation, and creative studio. Since KNIGHTWORKS debut in 2009, Le Pesant has partnered with a long list of clients and has produced over a dozen award-winning animated and scripted series, films, and documentaries.

Source: Gaumont