Warner Bros. Entertainment and Village Roadshow Pictures Group (VRPG) have extended their long-standing partnership and will continue to co-produce and co-finance films through the end of 2017. In concert with the Warner Bros. deal, VRPG also renewed and up-sized its now 15-year film production facility to $1.125 billion through the end of 2017 to finance its future slate of motion pictures. JPMorgan Chase and Rabobank continue as joint syndication agents.
"We now have the firepower of the financing locked away, the best management in the business and the renewal of our long-term relationship with Warner Bros. which puts us in fantastic shape. Warner Bros. continues to be the industry leader in production, distribution and marketing," said Graham Burke, Chairman of Village Roadshow Entertainment Group (VREG).
"We have had a long, successful relationship with Village Roadshow, and we are pleased they will continue to be our partner in making great movies," said Barry Meyer, Chairman and CEO, Warner Bros.
"We are pleased to have accomplished our strategic goal of closing the financing hand in hand with the extension of our Warner Bros. deal. We are fortunate to continue our partnership with a great studio and grateful to have a diverse group of investors on board," said Greg Basser, CEO of VREG.
Celebrating its 15th anniversary, VRPG is one of the industry's leading producers and financiers of studio released motion pictures, amassing a library of 72 films, 68 of which were released in partnership with Warner Bros. - representing the studio's longest continuous relationship with an independent film financing and production company.
"Working together, our companies have produced and released many popular and successful films, and we expect that to continue into the future with this agreement," said Jeffrey Robinov, President, Warner Bros. Pictures Group.
"We look forward to expanding upon the solid 15-year foundation and continuing to grow our slate of tent pole and star-driven films under the Warner banner," said Bruce Berman, Chairman and CEO of Village Roadshow Pictures. "We're excited to start the New Year with action-packed 'Gangster Squad' releasing in January followed by the highly anticipated summer event film 'The Great Gatsby' in May."
Warner Bros. and VRPG will continue to collaborate on high caliber, star-driven films, which have resulted in blockbuster hits including the "Sherlock Holmes," "Ocean's" and "Matrix" franchises and Academy Award animated picture winner "Happy Feet."
Upcoming releases include "Gangster Squad" under the direction of Ruben Fleischer, starring Ryan Gosling, Josh Brolin, Emma Stone and Sean Penn (U.S. release on January 11, 2013), and "The Great Gatsby" under the direction of Baz Luhrmann, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan and Tobey Maguire (U.S. release on May 10, 2013).
Films currently in production include "LEGO," an animated feature film adventure starring Will Arnett, Will Ferrell and Morgan Freeman directed by Phil Lord and Christopher Miller; "All You Need Is Kill," an epic sci-fi thriller starring Tom Cruise and Emily Blunt directed by Doug Liman; and "Mad Max: Fury Road," an action adventure starring Charlize Theron and Tom Hardy directed by George Miller.