It's Official: Lionsgate Buys Summit Entertainment for $412.5 Million
And history has been made. Today is now the day that it was officially announced and confirmed via a press release that Lionsgate is buying Summit Entertainment, the upstart indie distributor movie studio that began in 2006 and hit it rich with the still-not-over-yet Twilight series. The momentous deal was rumored for months and nearly confirmed earlier this week, but the press release announces the deal includes "a combination of cash and stock valued at $412.5 million." I'm much more interested to see how these two "indie" studios join forces to become one powerful Hollywood movie studio, it'll be an exciting time ahead.
The transaction unites two leading studios with powerful brands and complementary assets, solidifying Lionsgate's position as the world's largest and most diversified independent entertainment company. By acquiring Summit, Lionsgate enhances its feature film and home entertainment offerings and further broadens its 13,000 title filmed entertainment library to include such titles as The Twilight Saga, The Hurt Locker and RED. The integration of both Summit's domestic and international theatrical film operations will significantly enhance Lionsgate's production and distribution capacity, while also extending the Company's worldwide reach and creating a dominant international sales organization. "As demonstrated by this acquisition, Lionsgate remains focused on preserving a strong balance sheet while pursuing its long-term growth strategy," said Mark H. Rachesky, Co-Chairman of the Lionsgate Board of Directors.
For those curious about what might happen with some of the franchises, LA Times' blog Company Town (via SlashFilm) has posted an update from CEO Jon Feltheimer about the Twilight franchise (groan) and how it might not be over, despite Breaking Dawn: Part 2 coming up soon. "He believes the film franchise will continue to have value to his company, even after the Nov. 16 release of the fifth movie completes the adaptation of author Stephenie Meyer's four books." Feltheimer told them, "It's hard for me to imagine a movie that does $700 million-plus doesn't have ongoing value." But it sounds likely it might go to TV next - "I would certainly hope so," was his response when asked if that's a possibility. We'll definitely be sure to keep you informed on details as the sale is finalized and they announce what will actually happen with them.
For more information, read the full press release. We will continue to keep you updated on any more news regarding these two studios combining powers, but it is now official - Lionsgate will now own Summit.