MGM Renews Distribution Deal with Fox14 Apr, 2011 By: Chris Tribbey
MGM has renewed its worldwide Blu-ray Disc and DVD distribution pact with Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment through 2016. The move came as a surprise to some observers, who had expected MGM might move to another studio, either Paramount Pictures or back to Sony Pictures, which distributed MGM product prior to the inking of its existing U.S. distribution deal with Fox five years ago.
As part of the new agreement, Fox will now also oversee electronic sellthrough (EST) for MGM titles and will continue to handle MGM’s huge movie and television library, as well as distribute several upcoming new release productions to the home entertainment market, including the next James Bond film, set for global theatrical release on November 9, 2012.
“Twentieth Century Fox is a valued partner that has taken great care of the MGM library for many years with the highest degree of integrity,” Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum, co-chairmen and CEOs of MGM, said in a statement. “They are a tremendous asset to the studio as we look towards the future.”
“MGM and UA have made enormous contributions throughout the history of film, and we’re proud to be part of that legacy,” said Fox Filmed Entertainment’s chairmen and CEOs, Jim Gianopulos and Tom Rothman. “We’re delighted that we are extending our partnership with the studio under the leadership of our friends Gary and Roger.”
Twentieth Century Fox began managing MGM’s international home video distribution in 1999. The partnership expanded in 2006 when MGM signed a worldwide distribution pact with Fox. Speculation that MGM would leave Fox at the end of its initial five-year contract was further fueled by the departure of Eric Doctorow, general manager of MGM for Fox, who left last month to run home entertainment for Miramax.