Elizabeth Sheldon, the former Chief Operations Officer of BOND/360, has launched a new film distribution and sales company called Juno Films and has acquired her first films for release.
The first is Train of Salt and Sugar from filmmaker Licinio Azevedo, which will be financially supported by Railroad Development Corporation (RDC) with a national theatrical release in early 2018. The film, which won the Independent Italian Critic’s Prize at Locarno in 2016 and the Best Film trophy at the Joburg Film Festival, is based on historical events during the civil war in Mozambique on the rail line connecting the northern cities of Nampula and Cuamba.
Henry Posner III, chairman of RDC, said, “As the former operator of this railway, which served as the region’s lifeline during the civil war, we see supporting the film as a way of honoring its historic legacy. This builds on our initial support of publication of the English language version of the screenplay as a book in 2007.”
Juno has also acquired the North American rights to the Swiss and German award-winning documentary Cahier Africain from filmmaker Heidi Specogna. Filmed over seven years, Specogna captured the testimonies of 300 Central African women, girls and men revealing what Congolese mercenaries did to them in the wake of the last armed conflict in 2008. The film was awarded the German National Film Award (Lola) for Best Documentary and the Swiss National Film Award for Best Documentary.
Juno will offer the film for festivals and a limited theatrical campaign as well as to the educational market via Juno’s educational portal Cinedu.com with Public Performance Rights and EVOD beginning in September, 2017 followed by a consumer digital release in early 2018.
Both films were licensed from RushLake Media, with whom Juno is looking to co-acquire world-wide rights for select films. Rushlake Media is a digitally oriented sales and distribution company (VOD) and has been developing its international sales arm with a strong focus on African films and the African market.
As COO of BOND/360, Sheldon oversaw the release of The Settlers, Strike a Pose, Karl Marx City and The War Show. Prior she was the Senior VP at Kino Lorber. While VP at Lorber HT Digital, she launched the Alive Mind Cinema label.
The early stage of her career was built in the educational market, where she oversaw acquisitions and business development for two of the leading North America educational distributors.