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Hypable

Bloomberg is reporting that two movie studios well known to our readers – Summit Entertainment and Lionsgate – are in talks to merge.

Though it wouldn’t cause much that typical moviegoers would notice, it’d certainly be beneficial for Lionsgate’s The Hunger Games franchise given Summit has experience from turning Twilight into a major financial success. From the report:

The companies have resumed discussions that broke down in the past over price and control issues, said the people, who declined to speak publicly because talks are private and there’s no assurance a deal will be reached.

Lions Gate would gain access to the cash generated by the five “Twilight” movies. The first four films have grossed more than $1 billion in worldwide ticket sales, according to Box Office Mojo. A sale would be a payday for owners of closely held Summit who formed the studio in 2007 with funding from Merrill Lynch & Co.

Summit, based in Santa Monica, California, is scheduled to release the fifth “Twilight” movie in a year. Lions Gate has about $550 million in short- and long-term debt, according to Bloomberg data, and has struggled to remain profitable.

Melissa Zukerman, a spokeswoman for Summit, declined to comment. Peter Wilkes, a Lions Gate spokesman, didn’t immediately respond to phone and e-mail requests for comment.

Lions Gate, also run from Santa Monica, California, produces cable TV’s “Mad Men” series and in March will release “The Hunger Games,” a film based on a young-adult book trilogy that has been compared to the “Twilight” novels.

“The Hunger Games” and three potential sequels may generate $220 million to $733 million in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization over the next several years, according to James Marsh, an analyst at Piper Jaffray & Co. in New York.

We’ll keep you updated on future developments. It’s completely possible that the talks could fall through if either side has any major issues with the deal. Reports have indicated in the past that the merge would be a good idea considering both studios are each considered a “mini-major”.

  • http://hypable.com Selina

    Wow. Game changer.

  • http://hypable.com Selina

    Also, fun shipping name invention time: SummitGate? Limit? What should it be called?!

    • jp

      limit would be cool!

  • Jason

    Personally I don’t like Summit or Lionsgate- there both too commercial for my taste. The Hunger Games was a great turn for Lionsgate and I’m glad they have a great crew, but Lionsgate has movies like ‘Legion’ and Summit like ‘Penelope’. The one good thing about the commercial merge is that it draws big directors and actors- after the hit ‘Twilight’, Summit started doing better movies like ‘Red’ and even the Best Picture winner ‘The Hurt Locker’ while I’m still looking for Lionsgate to make a move. 

    • http://twitter.com/SlySound Brett H

      Aren’t all film companies commercial by definition?

      Lionsgate have done many great movies as well so I’m not sure why you’re waiting for them to “make a move” when they’ve made several. 

  • DreamNox58

    I like the idea, it’s something that could benefit both, right??

  • nodaybut2day7

    As long as this means Hunger games had a bigger budget, i am happy!

  • Pingback: Lionsgate and Summit to Merge? | Twilight Lexicon

  • Melissa D.

    I don’t really care if they merge, as long as Summit’s marketers don’t turn THG in to a Team Gale and Team Peeta situation. I really don’t want that.

  • http://twitter.com/laura_gally14 Laura Gallant

    I’m intrigued by this, but I’m also mildly laughing at “said the people” in the third paragraph. THE PEOPLE HAVE SPOKEN!

  • 7Starrchasers

    This is amusing to me…but I don’t really care…like someone mentioned before, this might be good for THG….a bigger budget!

  • Josuemc 93

    WHAT THE F*CKKK!!! NO! This will only make Hunger Games more prone to be a superficial and shallow franchise like the way Summit did to Twilight (it already was but they endorsed it more). Hunger Games DESERVES better than this. Just my opinion.

  • PotterheadedHungerGamingGleek

    I suppose it just depends how much this would actually affect the Hunger Games films. I would hope that the fact that Summit produced the Twilight films would have nothing to do with The Hunger Games, otherwise I’d be really disappointed. The last thing I want to see is The Hunger Games become The Twilight Games, THG is better than that. 

  • denicajo

    summit tends to not have the highest quality movies. they have way more money, but there movies arent the best (they tend to be responsible for a lot of ridiculous films). i hope that wouldnt change lionsgate, which on average makes much better films.

  • TheOneAndOnlyCliche

    I hope this doesn’t happen. Summit have a released a few GREAT little films, but at the same time, it seems to be the movie equivalent of NBC – it churns out monek maker after moneymaker, rarely making anything brilliant, and when it does, the project gets so little backing that it doesn’t do as well as it could.
    Lionsgate are a much more bankable company, and this just seems like another cash-cow plan on Summit’s behalf. I could be wrong, maybe there’s more to it, but I don’t see the point in this collaboration happening. I really don’t.

  • soph

    It seems like everyone is desperate to compare the hunger games to twilight! 

  • Jhonny Ayrout

    Personally I believe that this is a chance for Summit to become larger and bigger on the expense of Lionsgate. And Lionsgate has been lately in very bad waters because they weren’t making that much money, so they might think that this is a great opportunity to bounce back. 

    BUT the most important thing in Lionsgate’s history is about to happen, they’re releasing The Hunger Games in four months, and if it’s played right and the movie turns out good enough, Lionsgate would not need Summit to bounce, they would’ve done it all by themselves.So, I really hope Lionsgate holds off making this deal until March, and in the case that the movie doesn’t do well, then they should merge. but if it does good, they SHOULDN’T merge!

  • wazzup

    no way this is gonna ruin the hunger games as other people will begin to interfere with it and destroy it. i mean a bigger budget would be great but i reakon that they will gross enough at the box office to budget the other movies.

  • Christine Condon

    I’m happy to hear that Lionsgate will gain access to the funds generated from Twilight to use for THG, but I certainly don’t want THG turned into anything resembling the Twilight movies.

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