Dec 04, 2020
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Ent. One distribution business

TORONTO (CP) _ The ink has hardly dried on divvying assets from the sale of Alliance Atlantis, but already a new major media shakeup could be on the horizon involving the recently reworked Entertainment One Ltd. and several key players from the final months at the former media giant.

Entertainment One, once known primarily for its wholesale CD sales, has plunged into an ambitious project designed to grab a share of both the Canadian and international film distribution market.

Patrice Theroux, the former chief executive of Alliance Atlantis’ Motion Picture Distribution division, has taken the reins at its new filmed entertainment division.

Earlier this week, Entertainment One announced that it was bulking up its catalogue by purchasing a 500-film library from Seville Entertainment Inc.

The move was an aggressive sign that this evolving company is preparing for an all-out battle against its competitors by loading its arsenal with strategic weapons.

Theroux will focus on building further industry relationships. Back in his days at Alliance’s MPD, he worked with chairman Victor Loewy before Theroux was ousted amidst drama that eventually led to Loewy quitting his position in protest.

At the time, MPD claimed that Theroux was deceiving the board and using company funds for personal costs. The allegations were later dropped in a settlement.

As the drama played out, allegations spread to Loewy. MPD claimed that he was in discussions with its "key suppliers" and travelled to New York and Los Angeles to meet and lure them away. None of those allegations were proven in court.

Shortly after the injunction was filed, MPD did the unexpected and rehired Loewy as a consultant _ an effort widely believed to be a last-ditch effort to save a distribution contract with New Line, the Hollywood company that produced franchises such as "The Lord of the Rings" and "Rush Hour."

By hanging onto Loewy, MPD was able to maintain the New Line distribution contract through to Dec. 31, 2008, saving itself from losing about 15 per cent of its total revenue.

But speculation has mounted that once Loewy’s contact comes to an end, and New Line is freed up, the two could migrate over to Entertainment One, tearing off a huge chunk of MPD’s business. Calls to MPD for comment were not returned.

Theroux said that he hasn’t talked to Loewy about migrating to Entertainment One, but he planned to compete with his "best friend in the business" and "mentor" in the short term.

"Obviously one day if we can work together in some circumstances, I’d be really, really happy," he said in a phone interview.

Theroux also said his film division will look at luring away MPD’s distribution contracts with Hollywood companies like Miramax and the Weinstein Company, most of which run for three to five years.

"I’ve been working with these companies for many, many years, so we have a great level of comfort with all these labels," he said.

"We will certainly be discussing that option."

In the short term, Entertainment One will head to the Toronto International Film Festival next month with an eye for acquisitions.

With Seville under its arm it’ll also be showcasing "Shake Hands With the Devil," a dramatic version of the autobiography by Romeo Dallaire about the Rwandan genocide. The film has already generated some awards buzz.

Entertainment One is also in discussions for several acquisitions, according to chief executive Darren Throop.

"There are a couple of other opportunities that are, in our opinion, very real opportunities in front of us right now that we’d like to move on very quickly as well. You will see more going on with E1 in the near future," he said.

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Headline, Industry News

Ent. One distribution business

TORONTO (CP) _ The ink has hardly dried on divvying assets from the sale of Alliance Atlantis, but already a new major media shakeup could be on the horizon involving the recently reworked Entertainment One Ltd. and several key players from the final months at the former media giant.

Entertainment One, once known primarily for its wholesale CD sales, has plunged into an ambitious project designed to grab a share of both the Canadian and international film distribution market.

Patrice Theroux, the former chief executive of Alliance Atlantis’ Motion Picture Distribution division, has taken the reins at its new filmed entertainment division.

Earlier this week, Entertainment One announced that it was bulking up its catalogue by purchasing a 500-film library from Seville Entertainment Inc.

The move was an aggressive sign that this evolving company is preparing for an all-out battle against its competitors by loading its arsenal with strategic weapons.

Theroux will focus on building further industry relationships. Back in his days at Alliance’s MPD, he worked with chairman Victor Loewy before Theroux was ousted amidst drama that eventually led to Loewy quitting his position in protest.

At the time, MPD claimed that Theroux was deceiving the board and using company funds for personal costs. The allegations were later dropped in a settlement.

As the drama played out, allegations spread to Loewy. MPD claimed that he was in discussions with its "key suppliers" and travelled to New York and Los Angeles to meet and lure them away. None of those allegations were proven in court.

Shortly after the injunction was filed, MPD did the unexpected and rehired Loewy as a consultant _ an effort widely believed to be a last-ditch effort to save a distribution contract with New Line, the Hollywood company that produced franchises such as "The Lord of the Rings" and "Rush Hour."

By hanging onto Loewy, MPD was able to maintain the New Line distribution contract through to Dec. 31, 2008, saving itself from losing about 15 per cent of its total revenue.

But speculation has mounted that once Loewy’s contact comes to an end, and New Line is freed up, the two could migrate over to Entertainment One, tearing off a huge chunk of MPD’s business. Calls to MPD for comment were not returned.

Theroux said that he hasn’t talked to Loewy about migrating to Entertainment One, but he planned to compete with his "best friend in the business" and "mentor" in the short term.

"Obviously one day if we can work together in some circumstances, I’d be really, really happy," he said in a phone interview.

Theroux also said his film division will look at luring away MPD’s distribution contracts with Hollywood companies like Miramax and the Weinstein Company, most of which run for three to five years.

"I’ve been working with these companies for many, many years, so we have a great level of comfort with all these labels," he said.

"We will certainly be discussing that option."

In the short term, Entertainment One will head to the Toronto International Film Festival next month with an eye for acquisitions.

With Seville under its arm it’ll also be showcasing "Shake Hands With the Devil," a dramatic version of the autobiography by Romeo Dallaire about the Rwandan genocide. The film has already generated some awards buzz.

Entertainment One is also in discussions for several acquisitions, according to chief executive Darren Throop.

"There are a couple of other opportunities that are, in our opinion, very real opportunities in front of us right now that we’d like to move on very quickly as well. You will see more going on with E1 in the near future," he said.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Headline, Industry News

Ent. One distribution business

TORONTO (CP) _ The ink has hardly dried on divvying assets from the sale of Alliance Atlantis, but already a new major media shakeup could be on the horizon involving the recently reworked Entertainment One Ltd. and several key players from the final months at the former media giant.

Entertainment One, once known primarily for its wholesale CD sales, has plunged into an ambitious project designed to grab a share of both the Canadian and international film distribution market.

Patrice Theroux, the former chief executive of Alliance Atlantis’ Motion Picture Distribution division, has taken the reins at its new filmed entertainment division.

Earlier this week, Entertainment One announced that it was bulking up its catalogue by purchasing a 500-film library from Seville Entertainment Inc.

The move was an aggressive sign that this evolving company is preparing for an all-out battle against its competitors by loading its arsenal with strategic weapons.

Theroux will focus on building further industry relationships. Back in his days at Alliance’s MPD, he worked with chairman Victor Loewy before Theroux was ousted amidst drama that eventually led to Loewy quitting his position in protest.

At the time, MPD claimed that Theroux was deceiving the board and using company funds for personal costs. The allegations were later dropped in a settlement.

As the drama played out, allegations spread to Loewy. MPD claimed that he was in discussions with its "key suppliers" and travelled to New York and Los Angeles to meet and lure them away. None of those allegations were proven in court.

Shortly after the injunction was filed, MPD did the unexpected and rehired Loewy as a consultant _ an effort widely believed to be a last-ditch effort to save a distribution contract with New Line, the Hollywood company that produced franchises such as "The Lord of the Rings" and "Rush Hour."

By hanging onto Loewy, MPD was able to maintain the New Line distribution contract through to Dec. 31, 2008, saving itself from losing about 15 per cent of its total revenue.

But speculation has mounted that once Loewy’s contact comes to an end, and New Line is freed up, the two could migrate over to Entertainment One, tearing off a huge chunk of MPD’s business. Calls to MPD for comment were not returned.

Theroux said that he hasn’t talked to Loewy about migrating to Entertainment One, but he planned to compete with his "best friend in the business" and "mentor" in the short term.

"Obviously one day if we can work together in some circumstances, I’d be really, really happy," he said in a phone interview.

Theroux also said his film division will look at luring away MPD’s distribution contracts with Hollywood companies like Miramax and the Weinstein Company, most of which run for three to five years.

"I’ve been working with these companies for many, many years, so we have a great level of comfort with all these labels," he said.

"We will certainly be discussing that option."

In the short term, Entertainment One will head to the Toronto International Film Festival next month with an eye for acquisitions.

With Seville under its arm it’ll also be showcasing "Shake Hands With the Devil," a dramatic version of the autobiography by Romeo Dallaire about the Rwandan genocide. The film has already generated some awards buzz.

Entertainment One is also in discussions for several acquisitions, according to chief executive Darren Throop.

"There are a couple of other opportunities that are, in our opinion, very real opportunities in front of us right now that we’d like to move on very quickly as well. You will see more going on with E1 in the near future," he said.

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Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

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