BREAKING: Exclusive Media co-chairman/CEO Nigel Sinclair and Guy East have finalized their exits, and Marc Schipper has taken the reins as new Exclusive CEO. Insiders say that Sinclair and East will resurface very quickly with White Horse Pictures, a company that will focus on the production of quality feature films and TV programming. The name comes from the prehistoric hill figure known as the Uffington White Horse. The duo had been on the outs with the company’s majority owners who no longer wanted to take big bets in the production business after a few films didn’t hit. The company has downsized since, and for instance exited the Johnny Depp Whitey Bulger film Black Mass, which Warner Bros acquired to distribute worldwide.
Backed by the Dutch investment fund Dasym Investment Strategies, Exclusive has laid off most of its production department, but it has a strong library of over 1000 and will move forward primarily as a library and sales company. After Deadline dropped the bombshell at Berlin that Sinclair and East would be leaving, subsequent reports put the blame squarely on the Ron Howard-directed Rush. I don’t think that film was the main reason. Though a disappointment in the U.S., the film was hardly a disaster, its $90 million worldwide gross double its $40 million budget, with risk spread among multiple partners.