Country: Germany
Languages: English, German, French


A writer and producer of features, series and documentaries, John is Co-Managing Partner of the German production company ‘Penned Pictures”.

As an independent Producer, John began his involvement in the film industry by participating in the development and production of a number of shorts, including the award-winning drama, ‘Fragile Storm’, starring Lance Henriksen, before venturing into the production of features and creating Penned Pictures. Among his recent projects, he produced the New Zealand based documentary ‘There’s a Hole in My Bucket’, narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch, and involving Oscar winning director, Peter Jackson, John Rhys-Davies, Billy Boyd, and Oscar winning SFX/VFX studio Weta Workshop. His current projects include the features ‘In a Heartbeat’, the authorized biopic of British singer/songwriter Chris Norman and his rock band Smokie, and ‘Villa Aurora’ with Malcolm McDowell.

In October 2019, John was a member of the German delegation of film professionals that visited China in anticipation of the signature of a co-production treaty between the two countries, and was also a guest at the 32nd Chinese Academy ‘Golden Rooster’ Awards Ceremony.

As a screenwriter, John won the Louis Mitchell Award for his thriller ‘Chilling Truths’ at the 2015 Action on Film Film Festival in Los Angeles. In 2016, his Tokyo based drama feature ‘Mujō’ was one of six international projects chosen for the Capalbio Future Storyteller Lab in Italy, with mentorship from Colin Trevorrow, director/writer of Jurassic World, before being subsequently selected to represent the Lab at the MIA International Audiovisual Market of the 2016 Rome Film Festival. More recently, John’s historical Chinese Drama ‘Torn Silk’ was one of nine European projects selected for the 4th Sino-European Project Lab, an immersive international workshop and think-tank for Sino-European co-productions, and he has just completed the screenplay for the latest feature in the Yolki franchise for Timur Bekmambetov’s production company, Bazelevs.

Another of John’s interests, the exploration of innovative story formats and cross-media technologies, resulted in the development of the German/US transmedia mystery series ‘Lostfriesland’. Destined for the mobile generation, it explores interactive storytelling through the use of multiple media platforms, and VR technologies, immersing the audience in the story. The unique concept aroused such interest in Germany that the German TV channel NDR filmed the ‘making of’ the proof of concept teaser.

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Business Phone: +49 160 9287 1831
Business Email: [email protected]
Business Address: Karwendelstr. 10.
City: Penzberg
Business Zip/Postal Code: D-82377
Country: Germany
Languages: English, German, French
Year Joined: 2018

Company Overview

Based near Munich in Bavaria, Penned Pictures develops, packages and produces European and International projects for global theatrical, television, and digital-delivery (VOD) markets. Looking beyond the simple media of film, we seek to develop IPs that correspond to the full spectrum of entertainment and media supports, including comic books, animation, transmedia and VR.

Founded in 2018, Penned Pictures is headed by Josef Brandmaier and John Hörnschemeyer. Along with our sister companies, Uni Finance Media, Toruk Media and John Doe Agency, we are able to offer services in the domains of project development, financing, production and merchandising.

In order to facilitate the development of Sino-German co-productions, Penned Pictures is also actively cultivating strategic partnerships with members of the Chinese film industry, assisted by a ‘China-specific’ team with solid experience of both the Chinese film industry and cultural exchanges between the two countries.