19 May 2014 4:18 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Manuel Chiche, co-founder of Wild Side, a leading distributor of upscale genre movies in France like Nicolas Winding Refn’s “Drive,” Park Chan-wook’s “Old Boy” and Bong Joon-ho’s “Snowpiercer,” is now set to launch the Jokers, a Paris-based production and distribution house.

Whereas Wild Side, which was backed by Wild Bunch, only handled financing and distribution, the Jokers will be fully involved in developing and producing indie films, with an emphasis on emerging and up-and-coming genre helmers.

“Going independent and officially stepping into production was a natural evolution for me. I’ve formed strong bonds with talents like Winding Refn and Bong since their debuts, advising them at script stage all the way to the editing room, and I’m now looking forward to take our collaborations to the next level,” Chiche told Variety in an exclusive interview. Variety exclsuively announced the shingle and slate in the May 19 Cannes Daily. »

- Elsa Keslassy

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