Niels Juul Appointed Temporary CEO of Cecchi Gori Pictures

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Vittorio Cecchi Gori, the legendary Italian film producer behind such Oscar-winning classics as “Life is Beautiful,” “Il Postino,” and “Mediterraneo” has tapped Niels Juul as temporary CEO of Cecchi Gori Pictures.

With the results that our great team of lawyers and Niels have achieved, I have renewed hope that we will go back to what my father and I have done with passion and honor for 50 years…making beautiful movies.

Vittorio Cecchi Gori, the legendary Italian film producer behind such Oscar-winning classics as “Life is Beautiful,” “Il Postino,” and “Mediterraneo” has tapped Niels Juul as temporary CEO of Cecchi Gori Pictures.

Juul is a partner in the international brand recovery firm, Nofatego LLC. He comes to Cecchi Gori from his recent stint working with Elle Macpherson in restructuring and turning around the fortunes of UK publicly-listed apparel company Hot Tuna, PLC.

Vittorio Cecchi Gori has been embroiled in a number of legal battles in his native Rome, many of which have already proven to be unfounded and dropped by Italian prosecutors. Juul has been brought on board to recover lost assets and restructure operations after several years of mismanagement, neglect and fraud – and to return the Cecchi Gori brand to its exemplary history of international and domestic film & television production and distribution.

“I’ve known Vittorio for years and have always admired his incredible body of work and his remarkable eye for film, artistically as well as commercially,” Juul says. “After uncovering some of the neglect and abuse his companies has suffered while he was wrongfully accused bothered me on a personal level. I felt that not only did people try to strip him of his assets; they also tried to steal his name.

“The Cecchi Gori name is a great brand with a history and integrity that means something in this industry, and I’m looking forward to bringing that name back to the forefront,” he continues.

Cecchi Gori Pictures most recently co-produced “Everybody’s Fine” starring Robert De Niro, Kate Beckinsale and Drew Barrymore. They also co-produced one of Spain’s three foreign language film 2010 Academy Award entries, Fernando Trueba’s “The Dancer and The Thief” (“El baile de la Victoria”). They also produced Italy’s highest grossing film ever, in 2008’s “Sorry to Say I Love You,” which earned $27 million in domestic Italian box office alone.

“The last few years have been very trying for me and my family, but with the assistance of trusted friends we have prevailed in a very hostile environment,” Cecchi Gori said. “With the results that our great team of lawyers and Niels have achieved, I have renewed hope that we will go back to what my father and I have done with passion and honor for 50 years…making beautiful movies.”

Cecchi Gori Pictures will focus on producing films in the US and Italy, drawing from their sizable library of scripts, treatments and previously produced US and Italian films. They are currently in discussion with Martin Scorsese to co-produce “Silence,” the masterpiece by Shusako Endo (which is owned by Cecchi Gori). Cecchi Gori has also previously produced such American films as “A Bronx Tale” and “Carlito’s Way,” among others.

Juul is a Copenhagen native who has previously worked in London, Sydney, Paris and Tokyo in senior executive positions with brands such as Sony Ericsson, Ikea, Mobil Oil and Cerutti, before he headed up Von Dutch out of Los Angeles in 2003, turning the struggling fashion company into a $200 million worldwide label during his four-year stint.

Juul will be based in Los Angeles at Paramount Studios. Cecchi Gori Pictures also owns the Fine Arts Theatre on Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills which is currently under renovation.

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Lee Wallman

Erin Dunlap
Cecchi Gori Pictures
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