Pan Middle East and North African film distributor Front Row Filmed Entertainment has promoted staffers Nicolas Torloting, Carine Chaiban and Elie Touma to partners.
The trio originally joined the Dubai-based company in early 2019 as part of a revamp.
Torloting is currently Front Row’s COO, while Chaiban heads post-theatrical sales and Touma is in charge of Acquisitions & Theatrical Distribution.
“It’s been and is an absolute joy to work with the guys who fully understand and support the Front Row vision and have been vital to the company’s expansion in both the distribution and production arena,” said Front Row founer and CEO Gianluca Chakra
Launched by Chakra, Front Row has successfully navigated the fast-changing MENA market over the past two decades to become one of the leading distributors in the region.
It was the first MENA distributor to premiere films day & date during the Covid pandemic and curate collections promoting and championing Arabic cinema on Netflix and streaming platform.
The company also has an existing multi-year output deal with local Pay TV/SVOD platform Bein Media Group.
The company’s distribution arm currently handles the release of more than 200 films per year.
Many are released theatrically through Front Row’s regional distribution network, which includes joint ventures with exhibition chain Muvi Cinemas in Saudi Arabia and the Kuwait National Cinema Company (Cinescape) in Kuwait.
In parallel, the company also moved into the development and production of Arabic films and TV Series in recent years.
Its debut production was the Arabic-language Perfect Strangers remake, which launched as Netflix’s first Arabic Feature Original in 2022.
The film topped the charts regionally and also took the number three slot in the worldwide charts for a time.
Front Row now has a multi-year first look deal with Netflix and currently runs a full slate of features and TV Series that it is actively developing.
The company is currently in post-production on Matty Brown’s atmospheric thriller The Sand Castle starring Nadine Labaki, Ziad Bakri and the Capernaum siblings Zain and Reman Al Rafeea.
“It’s a constant and uphill battle in this market but I’m confident that with these ‘pillars’, the sky’s the limit,” Chakra said of his new partners.