Picture Group: Music and Entertainment Agency Launched

Posted on 9/15/2009 by Jim Pickerell | Printable Version | Comments (0)

Leading music and entertainment photographer, Frank Micelotta, has launched PictureGroup, a digital-media production company that will provide top entertainment companies with an integrated solution for producing, distributing, licensing, archiving, marketing and managing their photo needs and assets. Micelotta has developed a unique strategy to reduce costs and ensure a maximum return and exposure for clients' visual content and manage entertainment brands' photo and video assets.

PictureGroup also announced a strategic alliance with The Associated Press to license photos through the AP Images platform. Under the arrangement, PictureGroup will distribute content through the AP Images Web site to more than 57,000 users worldwide. AP Images will also offer premium content from PictureGroup to its online clients. Plus, AP Images will be able to offer entertainment assignment services and the option of using PictureGroup photographers.

Frank Micelotta, CEO and chief photographer, says PictureGroup offers a combination of cost reduction and photo asset management while "creating a new revenue stream for the companies from the photography taken at their premiere industry events."

Numerous well-known companies and properties have already signed on as clients, including MTV, BET, Comedy Central, FOX, MySpace, Columbia Records, Jive Label Group, RCA Records and EMI.

In addition to the A-list roster of clients, Micelotta also has strong relationships with the photo editors at leading entertainment publications, such as People Magazine, US Weekly, Entertainment Weekly and Rolling Stone, among others.

"Frank isn't just a talented photographer. He seems to know everybody, seems to be everywhere, and seems to be one of the nicest guys in the industry. I will be watching PictureGroup with great interest," commented Brittain Stone, US Weekly photography director.

In 1998, Micelotta founded ImageDirect, the first all-digital entertainment agency that revolutionized the entertainment photography business by creating a valuable digital archive that could be accessed immediately and globally. In 2003, ImageDirect was acquired by Getty Images and Micelotta became director of entertainment. The result was an explosion of sales and distribution, transforming Getty into a leader in entertainment photography.

Micelotta will run PictureGroup with Paul Melcher, another photo-media business veteran. Melcher was most recently CEO of Rex USA and vice president of sales at DigitalRailroad, Inc. Prior to that, he was director of North American operations and sales for Hachette Filipacchi Photo Group (www.hachettephotos.com), where he doubled revenues for the U.S. market in less than a year and led integration initiatives for numerous prestigious agencies, such as Gamma, Rapho and TOP.

Melcher and Micelotta were also partners at ImageDirect where Melcher guided the development of the company's online real-time distribution platform, streamlined workflow to enable better distribution of images and managed relationships with corporate clients such as ABC, MTV, FOX, NBC, Atlantic Records, USA Today and the NFL.

Elyssia Stratton is also joining as director of editing and workflow. Stratton is the former staff photo editor for NBC, and a freelance editor for AP, USA Today and Getty Images as well as an original staff member of ImageDirect.

Copyright © 2009 Jim Pickerell. The above article may not be copied, reproduced, excerpted or distributed in any manner without written permission from the author. All requests should be submitted to Selling Stock at 10319 Westlake Drive, Suite 162, Bethesda, MD 20817, phone 301-461-7627, e-mail: wvz@fpcubgbf.pbz

Jim Pickerell is founder of www.selling-stock.com, an online newsletter that publishes daily. He is also available for personal telephone consultations on pricing and other matters related to stock photography. He occasionally acts as an expert witness on matters related to stock photography. For his current curriculum vitae go to: http://www.jimpickerell.com/Curriculum-Vitae.aspx.  


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