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31st January 2024

Creativity Capital Founders Launch UK-Based Co-Production Outfit Big Safari

Industry veterans Richard Kondal and Patrick Fischer announce their new co-production company Big Safari. The company marks the latest addition to the duo’s entrepreneurial activities which also compromise shareholdings in sales agent Architect, financier Creativity Capital and VFX house Koala FX.

Big Safari was born out of the success of the 2022 Simon West directed television series “Boundless”, which Patrick and Richard co-produced whilst at Fulwell 73 together with Mono Films and Amazon.

The company’s strategy is setting up co-productions that help close finance for international producers. This can mean placing a US project in the UK to maximise soft money through a European co-production (“Svalta”) or finding a cost effective co-producer in the Philippines for a British film (“The Bayou”). It also helps European films access UK talent and locations to bring their productions firmly into a global market place (“Stargazer”).

Since it’s launch in early 2023 Big Safari has already gone into production with three projects:

Svalta – the Steffen Haars directed Nick Frost and Aisling Bea Thriller currently in post-production in the UK, having shot in Finland in the summer of 2023. The film is produced by Wayward Entertainment, Resolute Films, Film Service Finland, XYZ Films and Frost, with Big Safari co-producing.

Stargazer – a Psychic Thriller starring Rosalind Halstead and Poppy Delevigne, directed by Christian Neuman and produced by Luxembourg-based Deal Productions in co-production with Caviar and Big Safari.

The Bayou – a Survival Thriller directed by Taneli Mustonen starring Athena Strates and Andonis Anthony, produced by Tea Shop Productions, Cowboy Cosmonaut Films and co-produced by Big Sarai and Epicmedia Productions.

Big Safari’s Managing Director Richard Kondal explains: “We tailor our services to each project. For instance, US producers can come to us to structure European co-productions and access European and UK soft money. Setting this up from the UK ensures a safe home for their IP and we help to find the right shooting locations, co-producers and incentives for their budget and finance plans. We see co-production is a powerful tool of cooperation and believe success is best when it’s shared.”

Patrick Fischer adds: “With a deep understanding of finance and sales embedded in Big Safari, we are very much a partner to producers to help greenlight their films and series. We provide producers with the co-production know-how from where and who to work with, which all stems from our experience having produced/executive produced over 85 projects from arthouse to horror, film to series and everything in between.”
Tea Shop Productions’ James Harris who is producing “The Bayou” with Big Safari explains: “Working with Richard and Patrick has been extremely additive; we would simply not have been able to close finance without setting this up as a co-production with Epicmedia in the Philippines. Not to mention the post and VFX deals we got back in the UK.”

Big Safari is all about empowering producers and kick-starting projects, especially for the UK. It’s not been an easy 2023 for the industry and we believe co-production is the key to reduce risk, raise budgets and grow our production sector.

Link to the Deadline article

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