- Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2016
- LOS ANGELES
Open Road Films CEO Tom Ortenberg will be named Motion Picture Showman of the Year at the 53rd Annual International Cinematographers Guild (ICG, IATSE Local 600) Publicists Awards honoring excellence in publicity and promotion for motion pictures and television programs, to be held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on Friday, February 26.
Ortenberg has been at the helm of Open Road Films since its inception, almost five years ago. The company was founded by AMC Entertainment and Regal Entertainment Group, the two largest exhibitors in the U.S. Under Ortenberg’s leadership, the company has released a diverse slate of films including the acclaimed film Spotlight, which was named one of AFI’s Best Pictures of 2015, nominated for three Golden Globe Awards; and is nominated for five Spirit Awards, a DGA Award (for Tom McCarthy), a PGA Award, a WGA Award and eight Critics’ Choice Awards; along with being named one of best pictures of 2015 by more than 100 critics. Other highlights include The Grey, starring Liam Neeson, which opened #1 at the box office in 2012; End Of Watch, directed by David Ayer and starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Peña, which opened #1 at the box office in 2012; Nightcrawler, starring Jake Gyllenhaal, which took the #1 spot at the box-office during its opening week in 2014 and received an Oscar nomination for Best Original Screenplay, along with a Golden Globe nomination; the hit 2014 film Chef, written and directed by and starring Jon Favreau along with Sofia Vergara, Scarlett Johansson, John Leguizamo, Bobby Cannavale, Oliver Platt, Dustin Hoffman and Robert Downey, Jr.; and The Nut Job, which opened to more than $25 million at the box office as the highest opening of all time for an independent animated film.
Upcoming Open Road Films releases include the comedy Fifty Shades Of Black (1/29/16), starring Marlon Wayans; Triple 9, a thriller directed by John Hillcoat starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Casey Affleck, Anthony Mackie, Woody Harrelson, Aaron Paul, Kate Winslet, Gal Gadot, Norman Reedus, Teresa Palmer and Clifton Collins, Jr. (2/26/16); the Garry Marshall-directed romantic-comedy Mother’s Day (4/29/16), starring Julia Roberts, Jennifer Aniston, Kate Hudson, and Jason Sudeikis; Snowden (5/13/16), written and directed by Oliver Stone and starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Shailene Woodley; Sleepless Night, starring Jamie Foxx and Michelle Monaghan; Bleed For This, starring Miles Teller, Aaron Eckhart and Katey Sagal, directed by Ben Younger; and Blazing Samurai (4/14/2017), the animated family film featuring the voices of Samuel L. Jackson, Mel Brooks, Michael Cera, George Takei, Gabriel Iglesias, Aasif Mandvi, Djimon Hounsou, Michelle Yeoh and more.
Open Road Films has become a top independent distribution company that has recently ventured into feature film production and international distribution.
“Tom is the perfect example of the executive who understands that the very best motion pictures need equally creative publicity and marketing to achieve the success they deserve,” said Henri Bollinger, Awards Committee chairman. “The creative talent he works with know they can depend on receiving the best of these services when he is involved.”
ICG president Steven Poster, ASC. added, “In a short time Tom Ortenberg has turned Open Road into a supremely successful production and distribution organization. Last year Nightcrawler had everyone buzzing and this year’s Spotlight is many critics’ top choice. He has the touch.”
Prior to the formation of Open Road, Ortenberg spent more than a decade at Lionsgate Entertainment, ultimately serving as president of theatrical films; and served as president of theatrical films at The Weinstein Company.
Previous recipients of the Motion Picture Showmanship Award include Bob and Harvey Weinstein, Rob Friedman and Patrick Wachsberger, John Lasseter, James Cameron and Judd Apatow. The first such award went to Stanley Kramer in 1964.
As previously announced, the Television Showmanship Award goes to John Landgraf, Netflix CEO, and a Special Award of Merit will be presented to famed lyricists Alan and Marilyn Bergman. The recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award will be named shortly.
Other awards to be presented include the Les Mason Award (the highest honor given to a publicist), the Bob Yeager Award for Community Service, the Maxwell Weinberg Showmanship Awards for outstanding publicity campaigns of 2015 in films and television, unit still photography, press and international media awards.
More than 900 industry leaders are expected to attend the Awards Luncheon.