Variety Predicts Lionsgate to Land in Top 5 for Domestic Box Office
In Hollywood, the major movie studios are known as the “Big Six” and includes Fox, Paramount, Universal, Warner Bros, Disney, and Sony. Today, Variety posed the theory that with Lionsgate potentially cracking the top 5 for 2012′s domestic box office intake and their recent $800M refinancing deal, the studio could go from being a minor studio to one of the majors.
On the heels of its buyout of Summit Entertainment, the final straw came last week, when Lionsgate closed an $800 million refinancing package, the biggest sack of coin anyone’s plopped down on a Hollywood studio in recent memory. But we actually started kicking this idea around in the newsroom several months ago, when it became clear that Lionsgate is likely to land in the top 5 for 2012 domestic box-office market share.
At the time, a handful of pesky arguments kept that notion from galvanizing: Lionsgate doesn’t have an international distribution arm. Lionsgate isn’t attractive to A-list talent. Lionsgate doesn’t have a specialty division. Lionsgate doesn’t make films over $100 million.
One by one, these arguments have lost their power.
Though it’s true Lionsgate has no built-from-scratch overseas distribution arm, it instead has patched together a Frankenstein’s monster of foreign output deals, wrapping up or renewing five major territories — Scandinavia, German-speaking countries, East Asia, Spain and Latin America — in the past four months alone.
Top-tier thesps once wary of boarding a Lionsgate project now have two pretty good reasons to feel at ease: Jennifer Lawrence and Jennifer Lawrence. The “Hunger Games” star is getting a $10 million upfront paycheck from the now-lensing sequel “Catching Fire,” plus whatever backend she worked out. She’s one of the most in-demand femmes of the moment, and she’ll be the face of Lionsgate’s coming-out franchise for the next few years.
To read the full article, head over to Variety.