The stock is up 3.5% on the surprising announcement. Helped by the strong performance of films including The Hunger Games and The Twilight Saga – and especially the $800M revolving credit facility it negotiated last month – the independent studio says that it paid off “all amounts outstanding” from the $500M it borrowed to buy Summit. Lionsgate paid off the remaining balance of $299.2M with cash from the credit facility. That effectively lowered the interest burden to 3% from 7%, saving about $12M in interest expense per year. Lionsgate also made Summit a guarantor of its senior credit facility and 10.25% Senior Secured Second-Priority Notes due 2016.

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