In a historic move, East Africa actor and producer Ernest Napoleon has been tapped to oversee the international production and distribution company D Street Media Group as president.
Based in New York City, with offices in Berlin, Cape Town and Buenos Aires, Napolean will be number two in charge after CEO Dexter Davis whom he will report to directly.
Mr. Napolean will primary look after the company’s activities in Africa and the Middle East, but does not exclude him for other company matters around the world.
“This is a wonderful opportunity at this stage in my career, D Street Media Group is a fast-growing, independent company with arms all over the world. It’s my great honor to further develop our business in Africa and the Middle East, markets I’m quite familiar with, said Napolean.”
He went on to say: “I believe there are many opportunities for an American company like D Street in Africa, and with the right partners to create great content, we will succeed in Africa and most importantly in the United States and abroad.
“I’m thrilled to bring on such an enthusiastic partner like Ernest, his background as an actor and producer will serve him well as president. He’s quickly becoming a name in East Africa.
“I’ve heard wonder things about Tanzania and East Africa as a whole and I’m very excited to have Ernest on board to lead us to success across Africa, said Davis. The fact that he speaks Swahili, Russian, Swedish and of course English is an amazing asset in itself, add producer who wants to bring Africa and Africans to the world is something I could not be more pleased about or proud of.
D Street already has a presence on the continent with an office in Cape Town, South Africa. D Street Pictures, the production arm of the company executive produced a South African film called ‘Musiek vir die Agtergrond,’ an Afrikaans film it invested in in 2013.
The company is now in pre-production on ‘The Blue Mauritius.’ British director Charles Henri Belleville, (Jet Trash, The Inheritance) is attached to direct. Mr. Belleville has just completed his second film with superstar, Oscar nominated actor, Tom Hardy (Mad Max, Legend). The story is about five international thieves that go to Cape Town to steal the most valuable stamp in the world. It’s a cross between ‘Ocean’s Eleven’ and ‘National Treasure,’ which were big successes internationally.
The film stars an array of international talent which includes American actor, Eric Dane (Grey’s Anatomy, Last Ship), Brian Cox (The Rise of the Planet of the Apes, The Bourne Supremacy), John Ryes-Davies (The Lord of the Rings, Raiders of the Lost Ark) and French legend Gerard Depardieu (Life of Pi, The Man in the Iron Mask), to name but a few.
‘The Blue Mauritius’ will primarily be shot in Cape Town and the small coastal town of Port Shepstone South Africa, which is doubling for Mauritius. It’s a film developed for the international market, but with an African storyline. South African stars like Pearl Thusi and new comer Lwandle Ngwenya are also attached in parts not typically given to African actors.
It’s all part of D Street’s initiative to develop and produce African based commercial films that will travel around the world and create African stars along the way. With a production and distribution company based in America, it makes it more possible than ever. The film is executive produced by Mr. Davis and the American actor, rapper and presenter Nick Cannon (Chi-Raq, America’s Got Talent).
About D Street Media Group:
Headquartered in New York City with offices in Berlin, Buenos Aires and Cape Town is the holding company for D Street Releasing, D Street Pictures, D Street Medievertriebe GmbH in Germany and Americine SRL in Argentina. D Street Pictures’ The Reception, premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2005 and the 2010 award winning Rivers Wash Over Me, played at more than thirty film festivals. Both films were distributed by Strand Releasing.
In 2013 the company produced the Afrikaans film Music in the Background directed by Sallas de Jager and Somewhere Slow directed by Jeremy O’Keefe, starring Jessalyn Gilsig (Glee, Nip/Tuck) Robert Forster (Olympus has Fallen,The Descendants, Jackie Brown) and Denise Grayson (The Social Network, Citizen Jane) The film was released by Screen Media in January 2014.
D Street is executive producing and distributing Brazilian film Moto Anjos directed by Joe Tripician, shot on location in Sao Paulo, Brazil and Lone Hill directed by Sallas de Jager shooting in South Africa. D Street Releasing will distribute South African features Stargazer, Music in the background and the British thriller The Messenger and Romantic Dramedy Delicious.
D Street is executive producing Team Joy for Oscar winning producer Joe Newcomb (Dallas Buyers Club) and A Dangerous Road with producer Cliff Lanning (Fast & Furious 8, Fantastic Four,