The cinema and movies has always been a source of enjoyment and employment. After leaving college, my first job was with Kerridge Odeon, a film distributor in Auckland, New Zealand. This provided the ideal start for my working life and, unknown to me at the time, the ideal introduction into my own movie distribution company much later.
Like most young fellows of my vintage, the yearning for change and “something better” saw me take up different opportunities as they presented. The next few years after leaving Kerridge Odeon saw me working as a sales cadet for a major engineering supply company, before becoming Sales Manager for a smaller company, also in the Engineering field.
Life was good and getting even better.
After becoming a husband to my life partner, Sherrie, a bonny New Zealand lass, and later a father, my career path changed yet again and I became a self-employed Insurance Agent for AMP, selling Life, Super, Fire and General insurance.
In 1978, as a family, we left New Zealand to live in Queensland, Australia.
Yes, this move prompted another career change, still in the sales area - I became Sales Manager for a home builder, selling family homes and assisting with finance. This led to an interest in and passion for property development and a few years later, along with Sherrie, we started our own property development company. I am a member of the Australian Institute of Construction (MAIC).
Our development business prospered yet we were always seeking new opportunities and the booming home entertainment industry and movie rental explosion provided the inspiration. In 1991, Eagle Entertainment (Aust) Pty Ltd, a film distribution company, a family business, was born.
Today, one of my sons is running Eagle Entertainment and my time is spent between the property business and the film business.
My life is blessed; whilst we lost my beloved wife and mum of our kids last year after a long illness, I enjoy the love and support of 4 children and 6 grandchildren. And with all the travelling Sherrie and l did over the years, mainly in the Film Industry, I cherish a wonderful circle of friends in many countries.
Stefano Dammicco was the founder and CEO of Eagle Pictures S.p.A. until 2007. Under his leadership, Eagle Pictures produced an impressive series of box-office hits including Save the Last Dance, Along Came a Spider, Chocolat, Tomb Raider, CSI (TV series), The Passion of Christ, Memoirs of a Geisha, The Interpreter, Apocalypto and Eastern Promises to name a few. Stefano has worked with major the US studios and independent distributors and producers all over the world.
In 2013 Stefano founded Adler Entertainment. Since Adler’s birth, its goal has been to target potential box office hits. Today Adler’s slate is widely considered one of the strongest ever built, with films such as Maps to The Stars, directed by David Cronenberg (in Competition at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival ), Mortdecai starring Johnny Depp and Gwyneth Paltrow, Ridley Scott’s Child 44 starring Tom Hardy and Gary Oldman, Gotti starring John Travolta and Anthony Hopkins, Tracers starring Taylor Lautner, Solace starring Anthony Hopkins and Colin Farrell, The Last Witch Hunter starring Vin Diesel, American Ultra starring Kristen Stewart, Knight of Cups directed by Terrence Malick and starring Christian Bale, Natalie Portman and Cate Blanchett, Regression directed by Alejandro Amenábar and starring Ethan Hawke and Emma Watson, The Rewrite starring Hugh Grant and Marisa Tomei, Expiration starring Bruce Willis and Gods of Egypt directed by Alex Proyas and starring Gerard Butler.
Stefano has got four sons and lives in Milan with his wife Verena and Thomas, the littlest son.
When I was about 7 or 8 years old, happily growing up as an only child in a loving, television-free family home on the outskirts of Cologne, Germany, one day a cute big eyed, snub-nosed something crossed my path – it was a deer called Bambi…
I’ll never forget that first visit to the local cinema – a true movie palace with a hugely impressive mezzanine and ‘70s state-of-the-art projection and sound. As the auditorium was filling up, the usher kept sending people towards my seat – not realizing it had already been taken by the tiny little kid I was back then. Seventy minutes and quite a few tears later I had lost touch with reality, falling prey to the magnetic attraction of movie magic.
Ever since that day, I spent hours after hours at the movies, after school and on the weekends, fighting a personal campaign against German rating laws – while “officially” enjoying marathon bike tours through the countryside. More than once did I risk getting busted when returning home late for dinner – due to unexpected extended running times.
Today, after more than two decades in the movie and TV business and thousands of movies (and, yes, TV shows) later, there are still only very few things that can lure me away from the screen, whether big or small: a spicy Chicken Tikka Masala, a brilliant bluegrass album, a date with Rachael Leigh Cook – or my two wonderful sons, themselves on the verge of becoming true movie buffs.