LOS ANGELES, CA — Former Miramax Films and Warner Independent president Mark Gill has been named President of Millennium Films. The company plans to produce and finance five to eight star-driven, wide-release films per year with budgets between $20 and $80 million.
Gill will work closely with Nu Image/Millennium Films toppers Avi Lerner and Trevor Short and development head Boaz Davidson, starting in July, with particular focus on development, packaging, production and marketing.
Gill has 25 years of film business experience and a production track record of more than $1 billion at the box office.
“It’s a new Millennium,” said Lerner. “Mark and I have known each other for 10 years, and have worked together very well in the past. He is highly respected in the creative community, has a strong business sense, and is a very hard worker who likes to move as quickly as we do. I am confident that we will be an extremely effective team.”
“At first glance, Avi and I may seem like the ultimate odd couple,” Gill said. “But we’ve always gotten along really well, and we share the same ambition—to make high-quality commercial movies that are strong both creatively and economically on a worldwide basis. The most recent indication: he just completed production on a film directed by Gabriele Muccino starring Gerard Butler, Jessica Biel, Catherine Zeta Jones, Uma Thurman and Dennis Quaid (Playing the Field). I admire his business acumen, and have a ton of respect for his longevity in a business that tends to eat its young. And he makes me laugh.”
Gill was most recently the CEO and co-founder of The Film Department, an independent movie production and finance company, which was best known for “Law-Abiding Citizen,” a $40 million thriller starring Gerard Butler and Jamie Foxx that earned $133 million at the worldwide box office.
In the three prior years, Gill served as the founding president of Warner Independent Pictures. In his tenure, the company produced 15 films and earned 11 Oscar nominations, notably for “March of the Penguins” and “Good Night, and Good Luck.”
Gill joined Warner Independent from Stratus Film Co. (a partnership with “Saving Private Ryan” producer Mark Gordon and financier Bob Yari) where he helped put together four films including “Laws of Attraction,” “Matador” and “The Painted Veil.”
Prior to Stratus, Gill spent eight years at Miramax Films, where he was President of Miramax/L.A. He was involved in the production or acquisition of more than two dozen films, among them “The Talented Mr. Ripley,” “Central Station,” “Apocalypse Now Redux,” “In the Bedroom,” “Amelie,” “The Quiet American,” “Frida,” “Rabbit-Proof Fence,” “City of God” and “Under the Tuscan Sun.”
He joined Miramax in 1994 and served for three years as the company’s marketing chief, based in New York. Among the films he marketed: “Pulp Fiction,” “Scream,” “Good Will Hunting,” “Muriel’s Wedding,” “Flirting With Disaster,” “Trainspotting,” “Slingblade,” “Emma,” “Bullets Over Broadway,” “The Postman/Il Postino,” “The English Patient,” “Life is Beautiful” and “Shakespeare in Love.”
Prior to joining Miramax, Gill worked for six years at Columbia and TriStar Pictures, culminating in a three-year tenure as Senior Vice President in the marketing department. There, he worked on such films as “The Age of Innocence,” “Awakenings,” “Boyz N the Hood,” “Bram Stoker’s Dracula,” “El Mariachi,” “In the Line of Fire,” “A League of Their Own,” “The Prince of Tides,” “The Remains of the Day,” “A River Runs Through It,” and “Terminator 2.”
Prior to joining Columbia, Gill worked for nearly four years at Rogers & Cowan, the publicity agency. Before that, he served as a general assignment reporter for Newsweek magazine and for the Los Angeles Times.