Thomas Augsberger Dies: Eden Rock Media Founder & ‘Mr. Brooks’ EP Was 60

Thomas Augsberger, a producer, international media consultant and founder of Eden Rock Media, died suddenly today at his Hollywood Hills home, Deadline has learned. He was 60.

The Germany-born and trained attorney advised a number of high-profile media clients over the years, most prominently Germany’s Leonine Studios. Prior to Leonine, Augsberger served 23 years as an advisor to Dr. Herbert Kloiber‘s Tele Muenchen Group as TMG’s exclusive North American representative in the US.

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In 2002, he founded Eden Rock Media, a film and television production company and media consulting business.

Augsberger was widely respected for his deep experience in the production and acquisition of feature films, television series, and content libraries; investments in US distributors and production companies; the co-financing, co-production, and distribution of film, television, and digital projects; and the negotiation of German output deals with studios for theatrical, home entertainment, and television. Over the course of his 26-year consulting career, Augsberger acquired hundreds of individual film and TV projects as pre-buys from US producers, sales agents, and studios, including pre-buys of Marvel’s Iron Man franchise, Voltage’s Academy Award winner The Hurt Locker, Paramount’s Shutter Island, Summit’s Twilight franchise, Lionsgate’s John Wick franchise, Knives Out, and, most recently, the worldwide hit The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds & Snakes (which just crossed $200M global), as well as the forthcoming Lionsgate films Borderlands and Ballerina.

In television, Augsberger selected and licensed German-speaking rights for such series as Flashpoint, Anger Management, and The Night Manager. He has also overseen various TMG investments in the US, including a preferred equity investment in Lionsgate Entertainment in 1999 and the acquisition of the Mutual Film Library in 2006.

As a producer, Augsberger developed and produced more than 15 independently financed feature films, mostly from first time writer/directors. These include Incident at Loch Ness, written and directed by Zak Penn and starring Werner Herzog; Waiting, written and directed by Rob McKittrick, starring Ryan Reynolds & Anna Farris; Mr. Brooks, co-written and directed by Bruce Evans, starring Kevin Costner, Tucker & Dale vs. Evil, co-written and directed by Eli Craig, starring Tyler Labine and Alan Tudyk, and Solace, written by Sean Bailey and Ted Griffin, directed by Afonso Poyart, starring Anthony Hopkins, Colin Farrell, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, and Abbie Cornish.

He recently executive produced The Professionals, written by Michael Colleary and starring Brendan Fraser and Tom Welling, and Spy City, written by William Boyd and starring Dominic Cooper.

He is a founding partner of Filmaka, BestEverChannels, and Liquid Light. He served on the board of Lionsgate from 2002-2004 and, at the time of his passing, served on the boards of BEC, Liquid Light, and ROW8, a US PVOD & EST platform.

Leonine’s Fred Kogel said, “I am devastated. Thomas was a one of a kind character – one you do not find anymore today – and most of all a friend. My thoughts are with his family, that they will get through this horrible loss.”

Lionsgate’s Joe Drake said, “Thomas was wholly unique and a special colleague in our business, so many great memories created during 30 years of friendship. Always thoughtful, articulate, tough and deeply human – that was his super power. No surprise that he is so loved and has so many friends. He will be deeply missed and our hearts are with his family.”

Toby Emmerich said, “Knowing Thomas for the better part of 30 years I’ve never stopped admiring his enthusiasm for life and his essential optimism. Truly one of the most affable, gregarious and surprising people you will ever meet. I knew him best as a friend, a passionate film producer, and a deeply loving and engaged husband and father. And on the surprising front, an opera singer, former male model, and a shockingly quick and agile tennis and soccer player! The second to last time I saw Thomas was at UCLA to hear Jeanine Basinger and Sam Wesson talk about their book “Hollywood: The Oral History.” Thomas was happily there with his 16 year-old daughter Helena, who is, unsurprisingly, already a passionate filmmaker herself. Thomas will be missed by all who knew him.”

Said Patrick Wachsberger, “I am missing a great friend with the most beautiful singing voice; an amazingly bright colleague. Thomas is irreplaceable. A huge loss for anyone who had the amazing chance of knowing him.”

Said longtime friend, screenwriter and filmmaker Zak Penn, “There are people you rarely hear about that are as responsible for films as any director, writer, or star. People like Thomas Augsberger – a smart, sunny, and relentless force of nature who willed so many films into existence. He was a great lawyer, producer, athlete, opera singer, and most of all, husband and father. It pains me to know that I won’t hear that deep baritone again, I will miss him terribly.”

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