Lions Gate Home Entertainment has inked a distribution deal with the suddenly hot Toronto-based indie studio ThinkFilm.

The three-year deal gives Lions Gate DVD distribution rights to all of ThinkFilm's theatrical films and certain DVD premiere movies to selected retailers in the U.S., specifically mass merchants. ThinkFilm will continue distributing to other retailers directly.

The first title under the pact will be Oscar-winning documentary Born Into Brothels on Sept. 20, followed in the fourth quarter by high-profile indie titles Murderball and the controversial The Aristocrats.

The agreement announced by Lions Gate Entertainment president Steve Beeks and ThinkFilm president and CEO Jeff Sackman brings Lions Gate's total number of distributed theatrical films on DVD to about 30 per year.

"This deal reflects our continued commitment to the independent film marketplace as titles like Born Into Brothels, The Aristocrats and Murderball will further enhance our reputation for delivering original, daring, quality entertainment," Beeks said.

"We've been looking for a more efficient way to service the U.S. mass merchants and have found that in Steve Beeks and Lions Gate, one of the most powerful forces in home entertainment distribution," Sackman said.