Hollywood Actress Launches Media Empire

by Ross Stebbing

Thursday, July 24th, 2014

Louise LintonBusiness savvy Hollywood actress Louise Linton has proved her credentials extend well beyond her leading lady roles, by launching her own movie production company.

The Scots star, whose family still live in Edinburgh, is enjoying her most successful ever year on the big screen after landing breakthrough roles, including the lead in a new rom-com.

However the Fettes-educated Linton, who moved to Hollywood eight years ago, is determined to extend her career beyond on-screen parts by carving a niche in the lucrative movie funding business.

Now she has launched Stormchaser Films from her base in California, which will see her investing in film projects as well as pulling together other investors to help get big screen projects funded.

Already the 28-year-old has bagged her first production success, as the main production company for a taut new psychological thriller called Intruder, in which she also plays the lead role of a classical musician stalked in her own home.

HUMBLE BEGINNINGS

Delighted Louise told how she was inspired to name her production company after a small boat which her brother owned when they were growing up in the Scottish capital. She added: “My brother had a dinghy called The Stormchaser, which he kept down in Leith. The name was emblazoned on its hull in blue electrical-tape.

“When I first saw it I laughed and instantly appreciated the irony. It takes humour and audacity to give such a formidable name to a dinghy – but that little boat chased storms, crossed the Irish Sea and braved many rough waters.

“As soon as I decided to start the production company I knew I had the name. If that humble dinghy could weather such storms I figured my production company, despite its small beginnings, could weather the worst that Hollywood can throw at me.”

Louise Linton and business partner Louise took her artistic inspiration from actress and producer Brit Marling, whose first two film production ventures – The Sound of My Voice and Another Earth – were artistic and financial successes. In business terms, she has a strong admiration for Ryan Kavanaugh who founded Relativity Media, which has invested more than $20 billion and Brian Grazer who co-heads Imagine with Ron Howard.

She added: “I admired Brit Marling’s bravery and courage in filmmaking. She took a gamble and it paid off.  In terms of Kavanaugh and Grazer – they’re visionaries. They’re driven, tireless, and creative and the stories of where they came from and how they got where they are today are inspiring.”

Linton’s partner in the Stormchaser Films is Tina Sutakanat. The pair met at a dinner party and Linton was impressed by the other woman’s background in movie development, which involves dalliances with media power houses MGM and New Line Cinema.

She added: “Tina’s been in movie development her entire career, working for famous producers and production companies. Timing was perfect as she was ready to start producing on her own.

“We’re very different in terms of personality, contacts and skills. Certain responsibilities fall to her, others to me, but there’s never been argument over who does what. It works smoothly and we share complete trust and a strong and unified vision for the company.”

That vision includes producing at least two films per year, on similar lines to the backing for Intruder, where Stormchaser Films put up 30% of the funding with the remainder parcelled out to other investors. All of those with a financial stake are expected to see a 120% return on their investment.

Louise added: “We’re focused on the thriller/horror genre for the moment. While it’s my least favourite type of film to watch, they are lower risk than dramas, romance, and comedy. They sell well and are in demand in terms of content. They are also universal and translate easily no matter where they’re shown, which is great for foreign sales.

“Tina and I can usually agree on what makes a strong concept or which scripts we have interest in developing. It’s too early to talk about targets or turnover, but I’d be very happy for our portfolio of films to yield double our investment, whatever size it becomes.”

HOUSE OF HORRORS

First production venture, Intruder, is a dark, psychological thriller from acclaimed Travis Zariwny who has previously worked on films with stars including Harrison Ford, Cate Blanchett and Shia LaBeouf. The film also stars John Robinson, whose credits include Transformers, Lords of Dogtown.

Billed as a disturbing thriller to make audiences think twice about being home alone, the movie, due for premiere in October, combines the minimalism of Paranormal Activity and the cinematic elegance of classic Hitchcock films.

This year has also seen Louise land the lead role in rom-com Serial Daters Anonymous, opposite House of Cards, Mad Men and Gossip Girl heart throb, Sam Page. She also has a role in Warren Beatty’s eagerly anticipated biopic of Howard Hughes.

 

Public rleations agency account executive Ross Stebbing

Private: Ross Stebbing

As part of the expert PR team at a fast-paced Scottish public relations agency, Ross Stebbing works on diverse clients in sectors including film and media, construction, healthcare and logistics. While he delivers PR in Edinburgh, his results appear in newspapers, magazines and websites all across the UK and beyond.

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