EXCLUSIVE: Vertical Entertainment has hired Josh Spector as its new VP Acquisitions & Distribution, bringing aboard Gravitas Ventures’ Senior Director of Acquisitions in time to join Vertical’s contingent taking meetings at the Cannes Film Festival that begins next week.

In his new role, Spector with identify wider-release feature films as well as documentaries, and be tasked with growing the Vertical’s library which already includes titles like Other People, Under the Shadow and The Layover. Vertical has been ramping up its bigger fare making recent deals for pics including Gotti and Rob Reiner’s Shock and Awe.

“As Vertical continues to evolve, so does our interest in increasing our box office share and appeal to a larger audience base,” Vertical co-presidents Rich Goldberg and Mitch Budin said. “We’ve had our eye on Josh for a while now and he fits into everything we’re planning to do as the company moves forward. His enthusiasm for film is unparalleled in the industry and we’re thrilled he is part of the team.”

At Gravitas, Spector spearheaded the acquisition of more than 35 theatrical releases and 300 direct-to-VOD films a year while also overseeing the company’s film festival and market coverage. He previously worked at MGM.

Vertical’s 2018 slate includes three titles opening this summer: the Natalie Dormer-starrer In Darkness (May 25 release date), Kevin Connolly’s Gotti starring John Travolta as the mob boss (with Sunrider Productions, on June 15) and Rob Reiner’s political drama Shock and Awe (on DirecTV on June 14, in theaters July 13).

Spector will join Vertical partner Peter Jarowey on the ground in Cannes.