Lionsgate Expands Studiocanal Partnership with Multiyear U.S. Distribution Deal
Reflecting the continued growth of their longterm partnership, global content leader Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF:A, LGF:B) and STUDIOCANAL kicked off the American Film Market (AFM) by announcing the next group of star-driven event properties that Lionsgate will distribute in the U.S. under the companies' new multiyear agreement.
The pact further strengthens Lionsgate's upcoming release slate with an animated film from Oscar-winning Aardman Studios and two live action theatrical releases. The agreement also encompasses two major STUDIOCANAL properties currently in development.
The pact includes U.S. distribution rights to the animated family film Shaun The Sheep Movie 2, the follow-up to the critically-acclaimed original that was nominated for an Academy Award in 2015. Live action releases include the action thriller Hard Powder, teaming Academy Award nominees Liam Neeson and Laura Dern and Golden Globe nominee Emmy Rossum, and the adventure tale The Mercy for Roadside Attractions, teaming Oscar winners Colin Firth and Rachel Weisz.
Lionsgate's distribution relationship with STUDIOCANAL was launched by the 2010 horror thriller The Last Exorcism, continued with the acclaimed Shaun the Sheep Movie and includes the upcoming thriller The Commuter, slated for a January 12, 2018 debut, and the prehistoric comedy Aardman's Early Man, opening on February 16, 2018. Lionsgate also distributes STUDIOCANAL's 6,500-title film library in North America, and STUDIOCANAL has a long-term output deal for Lionsgate and Summit titles in Australia/New Zealand. The two companies are partnered in the Elevation Sales home entertainment joint venture in the UK.
"We're delighted to continue to expand our longstanding relationship with STUDIOCANAL, one of the greatest content companies in the world," said Lionsgate Co-COO and Motion Picture Group Co-President Steve Beeks. "They bring to our slate a mix of live action and animated event films driven by AAA talent that will continue to enhance the strength and diversity of our portfolio for years to come. We're also thrilled to be working again with our friends at Aardman Studios, the gold standard in family animation, on the highly-anticipated Shaun the Sheep Movie sequel."
"Lionsgate is a terrific partner with a proven track record of success in handling our films," said STUDIOCANAL Executive Vice President of International Distribution Anna Marsh. "We are excited by the opportunity to continue to tap their marketing expertise and distribution prowess as we add our titles to their commercially exciting slate."
The deal was negotiated for Lionsgate by Beeks, Lionsgate President of Acquisitions & Co-Productions Jason Constantine, and Lionsgate Executive Vice President of Acquisitions and Co-Productions Eda Kowan. Marsh negotiated the agreement on behalf of STUDIOCANAL.
ABOUT LIONSGATE The first major new studio in decades, Lionsgate is a global content platform whose films, television series, digital products and linear and over-the-top platforms reach next generation audiences around the world. In addition to its filmed entertainment leadership, Lionsgate content drives a growing presence in interactive and location-based entertainment, gaming, virtual reality and other new entertainment technologies. Lionsgate's content initiatives are backed by a 16,000-title film and television library and delivered through a global licensing infrastructure. The Lionsgate brand is synonymous with original, daring and ground-breaking content created with special emphasis on the evolving patterns and diverse composition of the Company's worldwide consumer base.
ABOUT STUDIOCANAL STUDIOCANAL, a 100% affiliate of CANAL+ Group held by Vivendi, is Europe's leader in production, right acquisition, distribution and international sales of feature films and TV series, operating directly in all three major European markets, France, the United Kingdom and Germany, as well as in Australia and New Zealand.
STUDIOCANAL owns one of the most important film libraries in the world, boasting 6,500 feature films, including the iconic Terminator 2, Breathless, Mulholland Drive and Belle de jour.
STUDIOCANAL has fully-financed recent box office hits likePaddington,Shaun the SheepMovie andNon-Stop. Upcoming films backed by STUDIOCANAL includeThe Commuterfeaturing Liam Neeson, the highly-anticipatedPaddington 2by Paul King, and Aardman Studios' stop-motion moviesEarly Manby Nick Park andShaun the Sheep Movie 2.
STUDIOCANAL is actively developing and distributing high-end TV series through its network of award-winning European production companies, including Tandem Productions in Germany (Crossing Lines,Spotless), the UK's RED Production Company (The Five,Happy Valley), Scandinavia's SAM created by Soren Sveistrup and Adam Price (Borgen, The Killing), and Spain's BAMB PRODUCCIONES (Grand Hotel, Velvet). STUDIOCANAL has also STAKES in the UK's SunnyMarch TV, created by Benedict Cumberbatch, Urban Myth Films and Guilty Party.