MOVIE NEWS …
It was the independent, art-house studio that became a major industry player in the 1990s, courtesy of such Oscar-winning hits as Pulp Fiction and The English Patient. But there was no Hollywood-style happy ending for Miramax studios, which shut up shop today with the loss of 80 jobs.
Founded by producers Bob and Harvey Weinstein back in 1979, Miramax flourished as an independent distribution and production outfit, before becoming part of the Disney empire in 1993. The company scored with low-budget hits such as Clerks and sex, lies and videotape and won Oscars, helped launch the career of Quentin Tarantino and scooped Oscars with the likes of The English Patient and Shakespeare in Love. The Weinsten brothers - who named the company after their parents Max and Miriam - quit to form the Weinstein Company in 2005.
During its heyday, Miramax was regarded as arguably the industry's most respected and influential production company. But in recent years its output has been downscaled by Disney, and its demise was predicted long before today's closure of its offices in LA. The six Miramax pictures that are currently awaiting distribution - including John Madden's The Debt and Last Night, starring Keira Knightley - now face an uncertain future.
"I'm feeling very nostalgic right now," Harvey Weinstein said today "I know the movies made on my and my brother Bob's watch will live on … Miramax has some brilliant people working within the organisation and I know they will go on to do great things in the industry."