MGM Revenues +43% In Q3 With TV License Fees For ‘Skyfall’ And ‘Hobbit’

By | Thursday November 14, 2013 @ 12:00pm PST

The hit movies are the gifts that keep on giving for MGM. In addition to the jump in revenues, the studio says that James Bond and the residents of Middle Earth helped to raise Q3 net income by $23M … Read More »

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‘12 Years A Slave’ Scribe John Ridley Boards ‘Ben-Hur’ Reboot At MGM

By | Thursday October 24, 2013 @ 9:17am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: MGM has set 12 Years A Slave scribe John Ridley to do a rewrite on Ben-Hur, a new adaptation of the 1880 Lew Wallace novel Ben-Hur: A Tale Of The Christ, which Timur Bekmambetov will direct, based … Read More »

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MGM Sets ‘The Spectacular Now’ Scribes Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber To Adapt ‘Me Before You’

By | Tuesday October 22, 2013 @ 4:51pm PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Scott Neustadter & Michael H. Weber have been set by MGM to adapt the Jojo Moyes best-selling novel Me Before You. They will work off a draft written by the author. Pic’s being produced by … Read More »

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MGM Licenses Additional Films And ‘Vikings’ To Amazon Prime

By | Tuesday October 22, 2013 @ 6:53am PDT

Fargo, Platoon, Annie Hall, Hotel Rwanda, and Hoosiers are among the films from the MGM library that will join the programming lineup for those who pay $79 a year for Amazon Prime (which provides free shipping for merchandise … Read More »

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‘Raging Bull’ Copyright Fight Will Be Judged By The Supreme Court

By | Tuesday October 1, 2013 @ 2:30pm PDT

The Supreme Court has answered the bell in the fight over early works based on the story of boxer Jake LaMotta – the subject of MGM‘s 1980 Best Picture nominee Raging Bull. The justices today agreed … Read More »

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Hot Trailer: ‘The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug’

By | Tuesday October 1, 2013 @ 6:03am PDT

Warner Bros has unleashed the second trailer for The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug, due out in the U.S. on December 13th. The sequel to Peter Jackson‘s The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is the second of three MGM- and Warner-produced movies adapted from JRR … Read More »

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MGM’s ‘Ben-Hur’ To Ride With Timur Bekmambetov As Director

By | Friday September 20, 2013 @ 3:03pm PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: I first reported last month that MGM was courting Wanted helmer Timur Bekmambetov to helm Ben-Hur. I have now confirmed that the helmer and the studio have closed their deal for him to direct a new … Read More »

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MGM Wants Its Stock Back; $75 Million Repurchase In Works

By | Friday September 13, 2013 @ 7:40am PDT
Mike Fleming

The Board of Directors of MGM Holdings Inc., authorized a share repurchase plan and adopted a Stockholder Rights Plan declaring a dividend distribution of one “Purchase Right” for each outstanding share of its Class A Common Stock and Class B Common Stock.

“Gary Barber and his team have done a great job building an attractive slate of new content in film and television, which is driving strong growth and profitability,” said Ann Mather, MGM’s Lead Director. “MGM’s healthy balance sheet and efficient operating structure position the Company for a wide array of options to maximize shareholder value. The MGM Board is considering all of these options carefully, and has approved the share repurchase plan in recognition of the Company’s strong performance to date and future prospects. Along with the share repurchase plan, the adoption of the Stockholder Rights Plan will allow the Board to act in the best interests of the Company and its stockholders without any distractions which could result from coercive and discriminatory takeover attempts.”

“As the Board considers MGM’s options for creating maximum value for our stockholders, the Board has authorized MGM to repurchase shares from stockholders,” said Gary Barber, MGM Inc.’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “The initial authorization by the Board under the stock repurchase plan is $75 million, and the Board will continue to assess the size of the repurchase plan over time.”

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Hot Trailer: ‘RoboCop’

By | Thursday September 5, 2013 @ 7:09pm PDT

“This is the future of American justice.” But it’s also “the illusion of free will”. Here’s the first trailer for Jose Padilha’s remake of the 1987 sci-fi pic. The Killing star Joel Kinnaman takes leave from the streets of Seattle to star as the detective-turned-crime-fighting cyborg in RoboCop. … Read More »

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MGM Elevates Michael Brown To EVP Worldwide Marketing

By | Wednesday September 4, 2013 @ 11:09am PDT

Michael Brown had been MGM‘s EVP Marketing overseeing efforts in global television and home entertainment and now takes the theatrical reins as well with the promotion to EVP Worldwide Marketing. He reports to chairman and CEO Gary Barber. … Read More »

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Hot Trailer: ‘Carrie’ Remake

By | Tuesday August 27, 2013 @ 3:04pm PDT

The second trailer for MGM/Screen Gems’ Carrie remake may spoil all the iconic scenes from the 1976 original. But Sissy Spacek’s telekinetic heroine never had to deal with mean girls in the cell phone age. Chloe Moretz stars as Stephen King‘s misfit teen opposite … Read More »

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MGM Acquires ‘Abe’, Will Turn Rob McLellan’s Nightmarish Short Into Feature

By | Wednesday August 21, 2013 @ 8:19am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: MGM has acquired rights to make a feature out of Abe, a short film by British writer/director/VFX artist Rob McLellan. McLellan will write and direct the feature about a robot serial killer, and Kevin Misher and … Read More »

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MGM In Talks With Timur Bekmambetov To Steer Chariot On ‘Ben-Hur’ Reboot

By | Monday August 19, 2013 @ 9:01am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: I can’t say definitively that the negotiations are going to work out, but MGM is in talks with Wanted helmer Timur Bekmambetov to helm Ben-Hur, a new adaptation of the 1880 Lew Wallace novel Ben-Hur: A Tale Of The Christ, which in its time outsold every book but The Bible until it was eclipsed by Gone With The Wind. This all got set in motion after MGM bought a Ben-Hur spec by Keith Clarke (he scripted the Peter Weir-directed The Way Back), a package that came with Sean Daniel and Joni Levin attached to produce, and Clarke and Jason Brown exec producing. This happened last January, right after MGM got new funding and was flush with proceeds from the 007 pic Skyfall and The Hobbit. I have been chasing the possible deal with Bekmambetov for the past two weeks, and it seemed intriguing enough as another Biblical epic moving forward that I felt it was worth noting despite the fact they haven’t reached financial terms and I don’t know for certain that they will.

Related: Sweet Chariot! MGM Is Re-Booting ‘Ben-Hur’ Read More »

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Nancy Tellem Replaces Peter Liguori On MGM Board

By | Wednesday August 14, 2013 @ 1:24pm PDT

CEO Gary Barber told MGM’s private investors that Tribune CEO Peter Liguori left the studio’s board so he could spend more time dealing with his company. He took charge of Tribune in January. Last month the company said that it will spend … Read More »

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MGM Reports Q2 Growth With Help From ‘Hobbit’ And ‘Skyfall’

By | Wednesday August 14, 2013 @ 11:01am PDT

The privately held studio says that revenues were up across all of its core businesses, but singled out contributions from the international release of home videos for The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and the James Bond film Skyfall. Read More »

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‘The Killing’s Mireille Enos Joins MGM’s ‘If I Stay’

By | Monday August 5, 2013 @ 3:16pm PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Mireille Enos is in talks to join Chloe Moretz in MGM’s If I Stay for director RJ Cutler. The film, an adaptation of the Gayle Forman novel, follows a … Read More »

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R.I.P. Bill Edwards

By | Friday August 2, 2013 @ 1:54pm PDT

Longtime MGM international publicity director Bill Edwards has died. Edwards passed away at his home in Cape Town, South Africa on Wednesday, Screendaily reports. He was 84. Born in Sutton-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire, England, Edwards began his film industry career in London in 1952 at the trade paper Kine Weekly. He joined … Read More »

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‘Fruitvale Station’ Duo Ryan Coogler And Michael B. Jordan Team With Sly Stallone On MGM ‘Rocky’ Spinoff ‘Creed’

By | Wednesday July 24, 2013 @ 9:03am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: MGM is setting Ryan Coogler to direct Creed, and the studio is in early talks with Coogler’s Fruitvale Station star Michael B. Jordan to play the grandson of Apollo Creed in a continuation of the Rocky saga that Coogler is going to write with Aaron Covington. Sylvester Stallone will reprise Rocky Balboa as a retired fighter-turned-trainer. This comes in the wake of a strong summer platform opening for Fruitvale Station, the film that won both the Grand Jury Prize and the Audience Awards at Sundance, and captured Prize Of The Future at the Cannes Film Festival, where Coogler and Jordan were the toast of the Croisette. Coogler intends for this to be his directorial follow-up to Fruitvale Station so the intention is to make it happen quickly.

Now, I know the knee-jerk reaction is to say it’s hard to get excited about what amounts to the seventh film in the Rocky series. This feels different to me, mostly because of how it came together. Much the same way that Coogler burned with the desire to tell the tragic story of Oscar Grant in his feature debut and begged Jordan to play the role in the $900,000 budget film, this whole idea also came from Coogler. When he signed with WME, Coogler identified Creed as a dream project. While Coogler already had the relationship with Jordan, the agency put him together with Stallone. Stallone, who is right now heavily involved in a stage musical transfer of his original Oscar-winning 1976 film Rocky, loved the idea and felt it was strong enough for him to bring back his signature screen character. Stallone and Coogler then approached MGM’s Gary Barber and Jon Glickman, and they flipped for it. The film will be produced by Irwin Winkler and Robert Chartoff, who produced the original, along with Stallone and Kevin King.

The intention is for Jordan to play the grandson of Apollo Creed (played in the early movies by Carl Weathers). Raised in an upper-crust home thanks to the ring riches earned by his grandfather, the young man doesn’t have to box and his family doesn’t want him to. Yet, he has the natural instinct and gifts and potential that made his grandfather the heavyweight champion until Rocky Balboa took his crown in 1979′s Rocky II. Creed’s grandson needs a mentor and turns to Balboa, who is out of boxing completely and not eager to return. Read More »

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Rosemarie DeWitt Scares Up Lead In ‘Poltergeist’ Revamp

By | Tuesday July 23, 2013 @ 11:56am PDT
Mike Fleming

EXCLUSIVE: Rosemarie DeWitt is the choice to play the female lead in Poltergeist, the new installment of the Tobe Hooper-directed horror classic that will be made by MGM and Fox Read More »

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