Mark Lazarus joins Sydney Films
Sydney Film Production Company is thrilled to welcome award-winning feature film producer Mark Lazarus as Head of Production.
The highly-experienced production and development executive will supervise Sydney Film’s feature film slate, including a new project announced today based on the critically acclaimed short story The Paper Menagerie.
Written by award-winning science fiction and fantasy writer Ken Liu, The Paper Menagerie follows Jack, a Chinese-American boy who learns about his late mother’s past through the origami animals she brought to life for him as a child. The celebrated piece of writing is the only story ever to win the Hugo, Nebula and World Fantasy awards.
Lazarus’ most recent producing credit is on Arclight Films’ Guardians of the Tomb, an Australian-Chinese co-production starring Li Bingbing, Kellan Lutz and Kelsey Grammer. He is also an executive producer on Greg McLean’s Jungle starring Daniel Radcliffe. Other previous producing credits include The Loved Ones, winner of the Cadillac People’s Choice Award for TIFF’s Midnight Madness sidebar in 2009; Restraint, directed by David Denneen (2008) starring Travis Fimmel, Stephen Moir and Teresa Palmer; and the critically acclaimed Australian Rules, which screened at Sundance.
Lazarus recently held the role of head of creative & acquisitions at Arclight Films. Before that, he served as a drama investment manager at Screen Australia where he worked on such films as Patrick Hughes’ Red Hill, Kimble Rendall’s Bait 3D, Sundance phenomenon The Babadook, Simon Pegg-starrer Kill Me Three Times, the Spierig Brothers’ time-twister Predestination starring Ethan Hawke and Julius Avery’s Son of a Gun starring Ewan McGregor, among others. Lazarus previously held roles at the Australian Film Commission, Filmgraphics Entertainment, Ocean Pictures and 20th Century Fox and Mel Gibson’s Icon Productions joint venture, Fox Icon Productions.
“I am delighted to be part of the Sydney Films team,” Lazarus said. “I am also excited to be able to utilise my skills in a leadership role at a company with enormous potential and imagination. It is a fantastic slate and we are going to have the opportunity to make some terrific pictures that will appeal to a global audience.”
Weinan Song, principal of Sydney Films, said, “I am thrilled that Mark Lazarus is joining our dynamic team. His wealth of experience in development, production and distribution will be invaluable to the company. He brings a strong skill set and a creative spirit to our slate.”
In April this year, Sydney Films announced a slate of 14 films that will all be developed to qualify as Australian-Chinese co-productions. In total, Sydney Films is aiming to identify 20 existing or potential co-production films with an overall investment budget of AUD$400 million (¥2 billion). All films will be shot in both China and Australia, with several productions intending to use multiple locations across Australia from Sydney to Melbourne and the Great Barrier Reef.
The first feature film to go into production will be Story of the Northeast Part 2, a sequel to the successful part 1 of the series that will be directed by Guo Dalei and shot early next year in Australia.
About Sydney Films
Sydney Film Production Company Pty Ltd, T/As Sydney Films, a subsidiary company of Pacific Holdings Group, is an Australian professional film production company bridging the Australian–Chinese film industries. Sydney Films owns a production facility situated in Stanmore NSW, which consists of a Cyclorama studio, screening room and offices, and receives substantiation support from its sister company, Pacific Holdings Group. The production company aims to bring together Australian film and television industry professionals to develop further connections with the Chinese film industry and market by creating international cooperation opportunities and promoting multi-cultural exchange and communications.