Charlotte's Film Foundry Moves Toward Release of Second Major Film

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CharlotteÂ?s Film Foundry owner Rick Eldridge announced that his firm has received a letter of intent from the Houston-based Stanford Financial Group (SFG) to underwrite a full-length feature film based on Jim StovallÂ?s novel, "The Ultimate Gift."

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It was Thanksgiving, 2004 when Jim Stovall's novel The Ultimate Gift hit bookstores, leaving an indelible impression on readers and, many agree, on an entire industry. To date, the book has sold close to two million copies, been translated into 15 languages and distributed in 14 countries.

Charlotte's Film Foundry owner Rick Eldridge announced that his firm has received a letter of intent from the Houston-based Stanford Financial Group (SFG) to underwrite a full-length feature film based on Stovall's novel. According to Eldridge, SFG has agreed to provide the $10 million dollars needed to produce the film with a vision to furthering themes from the book, which advocates a holistic approach to building wealth, together with non-financial elements affecting personal fulfillment and the creation of a positive legacy. SFG is a global network of affiliated companies with a common goal of providing innovative financial products and services.

Development of the film is part of still another venture related to Stovall's novel, called The Ultimate Gift Experience, LLC (TUGX). TUGX recently announced its partnership with the Financial Planning Association (FPA) to develop a line of products and services targeted to financial planning professionals for their ongoing work with clients "to transform the understanding and meaning of holistic wealth in today's global society," according to an TUGX news release dated June, 2005.

The Ultimate Gift is the story of a billionaire who seeks to make amends for spoiling his family materially but failing to invest himself in their lives and provide wisdom for their futures. Upon his death, Red Stevens' will singles out his great-nephew Jason to receive The Ultimate Gift, which will come to the self-absorbed young man only after his successful completion of a 12-month quest to find purpose and meaning in life -- beyond monetary gain.

At 41, Jim Stovall is a best-selling author and national speaker. His array of successful careers includes that of Olympic weightlifter, investment broker and co-founder and president of the international Narrative Television Network (NTN), which makes movies and television accessible for the visually impaired. Stovall, who is blind, is the recipient of numerous honors, including Entrepreneur of the Year in 1997 and, in 2005, an Emmy for his work at NTN.

"This project is particularly unique and truly exciting," comments Eldridge, Founder and CEO of The Film Foundry. "This is, in short, a film venture, sponsored by a professional organization -- the FPA -- and backed by the prestigious Stanford Financial Group, that will further a vision that is truly impacting lives now and for the future." The Film Foundry is credited with numerous outstanding projects, including the film Bobby Jones: Stroke of Genius, which was named among the top 20 home video releases of 2005.

About The Film Foundry. The Film Foundry is a post production facility that provides online (non-linear) editing, music composition, audio editing, graphic development and studio services, and is one of three Charlotte-based businesses operating under the oversight of Rae Management, also owned by Eldridge. Eldridge’s other related and cooperating ventures include GlueWorks, a full service animation division, Film Foundry Releasing, which provides theatre licensing and motion picture distribution services, and the Elim Fund, an investment fund developed in association with TUGX.

About the Stanford Group. Stanford Group Company is a member of Houston-based Stanford Financial Group, a global network of affiliated financial companies headed by Chairman and CEO R. Allen Stanford. Although independent, the affiliated companies together provide coordinated wealth management through international private banking, asset management, investment advisory services, trust administration, commercial banking, real estate development and insurance for clients worldwide.

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Chuck Robbins
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