UPDATE: Lionsgate’s announcement today of a reorganization of international operations looks to be one of the final elements to its integration of Summit. But the impact of the companies’ consolidation has yet to be fully borne out on an international scale. The upcoming Cannes Film Festival should be a good indicator of the future shape of the new entity. Following the departure in February of Summit International president David Garret – announced during the EFM in Berlin – Lionsgate today confirmed speculation that head of international Helen Lee Kim is also departing. She will remain through the Cannes market which runs from May 16-25, however, and is expected to fully exit near the end of the year. After laying off about 80 staff across the two companies in March, I hear that no further firings came as a result of today’s restructure. READ MORE »
Deadline readers already know this news. But here’s the official announcement:
SANTA MONICA, Calif., and VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Jan. 20, 2012 /CNW/ – Following Lionsgate’s (NYSE: LGF) acquisition of Summit Entertainment last Friday, the Company has named Summit Co-Chairs Rob Friedman and Patrick Wachsberger as Co-Chairs of Lionsgate’s Motion Picture Group, it was announced today.
Friedman and Wachsberger will oversee all aspects of Lionsgate’s domestic and international feature film acquisition, production and distribution business as well as the home entertainment releases of theatrical feature films.
“Rob and Patrick have built a remarkable organization at Summit, and they possess all the entrepreneurial leadership qualities that define our Lionsgate culture,” said Lionsgate Co-Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jon Feltheimer and Vice Chairman Michael Burns. “They are two of the most talented motion picture executives in our industry, and they have a history of building successful companies. Their addition to our senior management team should accelerate our continued growth into a global media powerhouse.” Friedman and Wachsberger will report to Feltheimer.
Rob Friedman & Patrick Wachsberger Sign Lionsgate Employment Contracts; Joe Drake Stays To Run ‘The Hunger Games’
EXCLUSIVE: I’ve learned that after some protracted negotiations Summit Entertainment co-chiefs Rob Friedman and Patrick Wachsberger today signed their respective employment contracts with Lionsgate. Until that happened there was nothing binding the pair to Summit’s new parent company. An announcement will come down tomorrow. Meanwhile, I’ve also learned that Lionsgate’s current movie chief Joe Drake has decided to stay and continue shepherding The Hunger Games, the studio’s hoped-for blockbuster franchise whose first installment comes out on March 23rd. Drake will be reporting to Lionsgate chairman Jon Feltheimer and vice chairman Michael Burns. The two independent movie studios will operate separately for some time with Summit a standalone label not unlike New Line and Warner Bros. Friedman will run domestic and Wachsberger will run foreign along the same division of labor they had at Summit and together run the movie division for Lionsgate. The new product pipeline of Lionsgate-Summit will be 10 to 14 movies a year. Meanwhile Friedman and Wachsberger are still very busy with Summit business: the studio’s Now You See Me starts production immediately, while Man On A Ledge releases January 27th, followed by the Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1 DVD selling February 11th.