Revitalized by the recent reinvigoration of its motion picture distribution and marketing organization as well as by the formation of its New Media division, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. (MGM) continues along its evolutionary path, controlling its library. To that end, MGM will be reestablishing its worldwide television distribution efforts, by bringing the business back in-house. Similarly, the studio will no longer divide its home entertainment releases between Sony Pictures Entertainment and 20th Century Fox home entertainment divisions, but will instead consolidate its home entertainment business with Fox. Additionally, MGM and Fox will continue their successful international theatrical distribution relationship.
MGM's library, recognized as the largest modern library in the world, encompasses 4,000 movie titles and 10,000-plus episodes of television programming, a large number of such titles and episodes are available for home entertainment release.
MGM Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Harry Sloan, in announcing the new structural changes, said: "MGM's motion picture distribution business is growing rapidly as we will release some 80 new feature films in North America over the next four years. We are now ready to turn our attention to our television and home entertainment distribution businesses. In so doing, we have identified another important opportunity to build out our business by returning our worldwide television sales operations in-house and by consolidating our home entertainment releases with a single distributor."
The changes do not affect Sony's distribution of the upcoming James Bond release, Casino Royale, due out in theatres this November. Additionally, MGM and Sony have extended their relationship in regards to the Bond franchise with both MGM and Sony agreeing to co-produce and co-distribute the next Bond movie, as well as The Pink Panther and others to be determined. MGM and Sony, along with Revolution Studios are also teaming up in a co-financing arrangement on Rocky Balboa, which will be released by MGM on December 22, 2006.