By Dave McNary | Variety
In a pre-Cannes move, veteran film executives Alison Thompson and Mark Gooder have partnered to form Cornerstone Films as a production-finance and sales company with offices in London and Los Angeles.
Conrnerstone will collaborate with Gail Egan and Andrea Calderwood’s London-based Potboiler Films
and the Berlin-based X Filme, which is run by Stefan Arndt and Uwe Schott. Both production companies will provide up to two films a year for financing and sales through the new company. Cornerstone will launch at Cannes with Mick Jackson’s recently announced “Denial,” starring Hilary Swank and Tom Wilkinson. The film is based on Deborah E. Lipstadt’s book “History on Trial: My Day in Court With a Holocaust Denier,” adapted for the screen by David Hare.
Thompson will fold her existing Sunray slate into Cornerstone Films, bringing over Asif Kapadia’s Amy Winehouse documentary “Amy” and Vincent Perez’s “Alone in Berlin,” starring Emma Thompson, Daniel Brühl and Brendan Gleeson. “Amy” will screen in this year’s official selection in Cannes in the Midnight section.
Gooder began his career in Australia. In 2000, he established a stand-alone distribution company for Mel Gibson and his partner Bruce Davey under their Icon banner. He moved to Los Angeles in 2006 to
oversee the Icon group of companies and became president of acquisitions for the Weinstein Co. in 2012.
Thompson spent eight years as co-president of Focus Features International, running its international arm. She was ousted two years ago as part of a reorganization by parent Universal Studios. Thompson began her career in film sales at the Sales Company and also worked at Pathé Pictures International.