WHO WE ARE
Susan Jackson passed away on October 14, 2014 after a long battle with breast cancer. Susan Jackson worked in feature film distribution for over twenty years, holding executive positions in sales, acquisitions and marketing at The Samuel Goldwyn Company, Vestron, BBC, Goodtimes, Sony and BMG/Bertelsmann.
In 1999 Jackson started indie sales company Turtles Crossing, LLC selling hundreds of films and tv shows to studios, TV channels and independent distributors in the USA.
In 2002 Jackson Executive Produced the hit indie film Cabin Fever. Jackson came on at script stage, brought in investors and sold the film to Lions Gate at the Toronto Film Festival. Produced for $1.4m Cabin Fever is considered one of the most profitable and successful indie features worldwide of the last decade. Jackson has gone on to Exec Produce many more indie films, which Turtles Crossing has successfully placed in distribution. In 2010 Jackson Co-Produced the indie comedy Dirty Girl starring Juno Temple, Milla Jovovich, Tim McGraw and William H. Macy. Jackson brought in the senior lender at script stage. Dirty Girl sold as a North American theatrical release to The Weinstein Company after it premiered at the Toronto Film Festival for the largest sale of the festival.
In 2004 Jackson founded theatrical service distributor Freestyle Releasing with theatrical distribution veteran Mark Borde, which has remained one of the top independent theatrical distributors in the USA for the last 5 years. Some of Freestyle’s most notable releases include God’s Not Dead ($61m box), The Illusionist ($41m box), An American Haunting ($17m box), And So It Goes ($15m box), Left Behind ($14m box), The Haunting of Molly Hartley ($14m box), The Collector ($8m box), and Bottle Shock ($5m box).
Freestyle Releasing provided Jackson a great theatrical distribution outlet for Turtles Crossing’s films and for independent producers who were not being offered a fair deal by the studios for wide service theatrical distribution. Borde, who had years of success in service distribution for independent producers and the studios had worked with Jackson when she was at BMG was the perfect partner for Jackson to build this service with. Freestyle pays the producers as the money comes in, charges fair fees and allows the investor to maximize their upside and hold onto their rights. Through Turtles Crossing’s output deals Freestyle can offer the producer short term deals to maximize their ancillary rights in major distribution while getting the VOD and DVD rights back within 10 years and holding onto the TV rights. Thus allowing producers to build up a library rather than the studio.
In 2010 Jackson founded Freestyle Digital Media, a North American aggregator for VOD. FDM has direct VOD pipeline in both digital and cable VOD outlets. Jackson realized that VOD is a big part of the future revenue of features and television and that it’s essential for Turtles and Freestyle to have their own deals in place as the VOD business grows.
Turtles Crossing, LLC has negotiated and manages Freestyles output deals for DVD/VOD/PAY TV AND CANADA. Additionally, Turtles Crossing has its own output deals for SVOD with Netflix.
Jackson is survived by her husband, Ben Morahan.
Chris Charalambous has worked in the film industry for over fifteen years.
Chris identifies new film projects for Turtles Crossing and works with producers during the sales process to keep them updated on the progress of their projects and marketing coordination.
Prior to joining Turtles Crossing, Chris worked as the film executive and associate producer at Pierce Brosnan’s film and television production company, Irish DreamTime. In addition to managing a slate of over 25 film and television projects in active development, he worked on five Irish DreamTime films that were independently financed and sold to major distributors for theatrical release including The Matador, Laws of Attraction and most recently, The Greatest.
In 2000-2001, he worked at MGM Studios in theatrical marketing research, international marketing, feature film development and theatrical production.
Justin Cohen has worked in the film industry for over three years now.
Justin coordinates the communication between Chris, himself, and our clients. He maintains all contracts and files, reviews new film projects for Turtles Crossing, attends distributor screenings, attends Sundance on behalf of the company each year, and puts together packages for companies (Netflix, Starz, Showtime, etc.) to consider.
Prior to joining Turtles Crossing, Justin graduated from Boston University with a B.S. in Film & Television. He moved to Los Angeles a few months later and started out as a production assistant on set of the Sundance indie The Truth About Emanuel starring Jessica Biel, Kaya Scodelario, and Alfred Molina. As filming was coming to an end, he was interviewed by Turtles Crossing and has worked here ever since.