SANTA MONICA, Calif. and PARIS, Nov. 6, 2015 /CNW/ -- Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), a premier next generation global content leader, has acquired the U.S. distribution rights to two films from Europe's leading studio STUDIOCANAL, the suspense thriller The Commuter, starring Liam Neeson, and the international thriller Our Kind of Traitor, starring Ewan McGregor, it was announced today by Lionsgate Co-COO and Motion Picture Group President Steve Beeks and STUDIOCANAL President of International Distribution & Marketing Rodolphe Buet.
The Commuter stars Neeson (the Taken series, Non-Stop, Star Wars Part 1: The Phantom Menace) as an ordinary businessman on his daily commute home – a commute that becomes anything but routine as he realizes a deadly plan is unfolding and he is unwittingly caught up in a criminal conspiracy that has life and death consequences. Written by Byron Willinger and Phil de Blasi, The Commuter is produced by The Picture Company's Andrew Rona and Alex Heineman.
Our Kind of Traitor is an international thriller starring McGregor (Star Wars, Moulin Rouge, The Impossible), Stellan Skarsgard (The Avengers, Railway Man), Damien Lewis (Homeland) and Naomie Harris (Spectre, Skyfall, Pirates of the Caribbean). Based on the John Le Carre spy novel, it is directed by Susanna White and produced by The Ink Factory and Potboiler Productions.
"The Commuter and Our Kind of Traitor are two suspenseful, action-packed, star-driven additions to our film slate that we expect to continue our successful partnership with STUDIOCANAL dating back to our breakout hit The Last Exorcist," said Beeks. "We look forward to working closely with Rodolphe and the entire STUDIOCANAL team as they continue to supply us with a commercially exciting roster of high-profile, branded event properties."
"Lionsgate has emerged as a major creative force in the global marketplace with a deep pipeline of blockbuster franchises, star-driven event films and specialty releases," said Buet. "We're delighted to tap into their world-class marketing and distribution organization that has achieved success across a broad portfolio of films, and we look forward to continuing to partner with them on the distribution of our exciting line-up of movies."
The two companies' multi-faceted alliance already encompasses STUDIOCANAL's distribution of Lionsgate films in Germany, Lionsgate's distribution of the prestigious STUDIOCANAL library in North America and the Elevation Sales home entertainment joint venture in the UK.
Lionsgate is a premier next generation global content leader with a strong and diversified presence in motion picture production and distribution, television programming and syndication, home entertainment, digital distribution, new channel platforms, video games and international distribution and sales. Lionsgate currently has more than 30 television shows on over 20 different networks spanning its primetime production, distribution and syndication businesses, including the critically-acclaimed hit series Orange is the New Black, the multiple Emmy Award-winning drama Mad Men, the hit broadcast network series Nashville, the syndication success The Wendy Williams Show, the acclaimed drama Manhattan and the breakout series The Royals.
Its feature film business has been fueled by such successes as the blockbuster first three installments of The Hunger Games franchise, the first two installments of the Divergent franchise, Sicario, The Age of Adaline, CBS/Lionsgate's The DUFF, John Wick, Now You See Me, Roadside Attractions' Love & Mercy and Mr. Holmes, Lionsgate/Codeblack Films' Addicted and Pantelion Films' Instructions Not Included, the highest-grossing Spanish-language film ever released in the U.S.
Lionsgate's home entertainment business is an industry leader in box office-to-DVD and box office-to-VOD revenue conversion rates. Lionsgate handles a prestigious and prolific library of approximately 16,000 motion picture and television titles that is an important source of recurring revenue and serves as the foundation for the growth of the Company's core businesses. The Lionsgate and Summit brands remain synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the world. www.lionsgate.com
STUDIOCANAL is Europe's leader in production, right acquisition, distribution and international sales of feature films and TV series.
STUDIOCANAL operates directly in all three major European markets, France, the United Kingdom and Germany, as well as in Australia and New Zealand. STUDIOCANAL is behind recent box office hits like Paddington, Shaun the Sheep and Non-Stop.
STUDIOCANAL has recently expanded its role as a TV drama producer with the acquisition of Tandem Communications, the German-based European leader in production and sales of international TV series, and of the UK's RED Production Company, a specialist in quality, English-language TV series.
Additionally, STUDIOCANAL owns one of the most important film libraries in the world, with more than 5,000 international titles.
STUDIOCANAL's parent company, CANAL+ Group, is fully-owned by Vivendi, a global media and content production and distribution group.
Peter D. Wilkes
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