British producer Stephen Woolley helped found the U.K.'s distinguished but relatively short-lived distribution company Palace Pictures in 1981 (it went bankrupt in 1992). The company was behind such highly acclaimed films as Blood Simple (1984). Woolley began producing movies in the mid-'80s with Nik Powell and Chris Brown, making such films as Mona Lisa (1986). Following the demise of Palace Pictures, Woolley founded Scala Productions with funding from Polygram. Before getting involved with films, Woolley had been a journalist.