Focus Features and Focus Features International (www.focusfeatures.com) comprise a singular global company. This worldwide studio makes original and daring films that challenge the mainstream to embrace and enjoy voices and visions from around the world that deliver global commercial success. The company operates as Focus Features in North America, and as Focus Features International (FFI) in the rest of the world.
Mr. Foley has been with Focus since its inception in May 2002. He has overseen distribution of such Academy Award-winning films as Sofia Coppola’s Lost in Translation, Michel Gondry’s Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Walter Salles’ The Motorcycle Diaries, Joe Wright’s Atonement, Roman Polanski’s The Pianist (which won three Oscars, including Best Director and Best Actor), Fernando Meirelles’ The Constant Gardener (winner of the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress), Gus Van Sant’s Milk (which won two Oscars, including Best Actor), and Ang Lee’s Brokeback Mountain (which won three Oscars, including Best Director). The latter is Focus’ top-grossing film to date, with over $83 million domestically.
He also orchestrated the release of such acclaimed Focus films as Joel and Ethan Coen’s Oscar-nominated A Serious Man and hit comedy thriller Burn After Reading; Henry Selick’s groundbreaking 3D stop-motion animated feature Coraline; Lisa Cholodenko’s Golden Globe Award-winning The Kids Are All Right; Cary Joji Fukunaga’s Sin Nombre and Jane Eyre; Thomas Balmès’ unique nonfiction feature Babies; Martin McDonagh’s In Bruges; Ang Lee’s Lust, Caution; David Cronenberg’s Eastern Promises; Joe Wright’s Pride & Prejudice and Hanna; Alejandro González Iñárritu’s 21 Grams; Todd Haynes’ Far from Heaven; and François Ozon’s Swimming Pool, which was the top specialized hit of the summer of 2003.
Over the past 25 years, Mr. Foley has been responsible for national film distribution of many major film releases. Among the companies he has worked for are USA Films, October Films, Miramax Films, MGM/UA, DeLaurentiis Entertainment Group, and Columbia Pictures.
While at MGM/UA, he held the position of President of Distribution. Films successfully released by the company under Mr. Foley included the Academy Award winners Moonstruck, A Fish Called Wanda, Rain Man, and Thelma & Louise.
Subsequently, at Miramax Films, Mr. Foley was President of Distribution. He handled Miramax product as well as Dimension Films releases. Among the former were the Academy Award winners Bullets over Broadway, Il Postino (The Postman), Emma, The English Patient, and the company’s first-ever $100 million-grossing film, Pulp Fiction. Among the latter were Dimension’s first-ever $100 million-grossing film, Scream, as well as The Crow and From Dusk Till Dawn.
Immediately prior to the formation of Focus Features, Mr. Foley was President of Theatrical Distribution at USA Films. At USA, Mr. Foley oversaw the domestic distribution of Steven Soderbergh’s Traffic, which won four Academy Awards (including Best Director and Best Supporting Actor) and earned over $124 million domestically.
Among the company’s other notable releases, domestic distribution of which was also overseen by Mr. Foley, were such award-winning features as Spike Jonze’s Being John Malkovich, Mike Leigh’s Topsy-Turvy, Neil LaBute’s Nurse Betty, Wong Kar-wai’s In the Mood for Love, Robert Altman’s Gosford Park, and Mira Nair’s Monsoon Wedding.
He had previously been President of Worldwide Distribution at October Films (and remained with the company during its subsequent incarnation as USA Films). Among the October Films releases he oversaw distribution of were such specialized successes as Anand Tucker’s Hilary and Jackie, Robert Altman’s Cookie’s Fortune, and James Moll’s Academy Award-winning documentary The Last Days.
Mr. Foley has also worked in theatrical exhibition as a film buyer, negotiating film-licensing agreements for City Cinemas, a New York-based theater chain that owns theaters in New York City, Houston, Minneapolis, Sacramento, and Puerto Rico. He was responsible for programming the chain’s Angelika Film Center in New York City, the highest-grossing arthouse cinema in the world.