SANTA MONICA, Calif. and HONG KONG, July 8, 2015 /CNW/ -- As part of its continued expansion into the game space, Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF), a premier next generation global content leader, has partnered with producer Avi Lerner's Millennium Films and Hong Kong-based mobile game developer and publisher Fifth Journey to create an Expendables mobile game, the companies announced today. The Expendables game, based on the star-studded action hero franchise whose first three installments grossed nearly $800 million at the global box office, will be released on mobile phones and tablets in late 2016.
"We're delighted to partner with the incredibly talented and successful Avi Lerner of Millennium Films and the innovative Eric Tan of Fifth Journey to expand the universe of The Expendables," said Lionsgate President of Interactive Ventures & Games Peter Levin. "Combining a powerful brand, a global fan base stretching from North America to China and cutting edge technology, The Expendables is the perfect cross-platform property to build into an action-packed mobile game loaded with state-of-the-art features. We're joining forces with a digital entrepreneur who knows the world of gamers inside and out and is ideally qualified to create a game that will captivate the franchise's current legions of action fans while introducing it to a whole new digital audience as well."
"Mobile games are the next logical world for the action heroes of The Expendables to conquer and the fastest-growing segment of the entertainment industry today," said Mr. Lerner. "With Lionsgate's tremendous marketing prowess and Fifth Journey's game development and publishing savvy, we're fortunate to have innovative and visionary partners who know how to take The Expendables to a new level with a ground-breaking game that will thrill old and new audiences alike."
"The Expendables has all the ingredients to build its success as an iconic global film franchise into an equally successful game," said Mr. Tan. "I'm very excited by the opportunity to work with the teams at Lionsgate and Millennium Films to extend this incredibly popular and celebrated brand into a property that will resonate with gamers here in China and around the world."
Mr. Tan is the CEO and founder of Fifth Journey, which he formed last year after 15 years' experience with Gameloft China, Electronic Arts Mobile China and Universal Digital Interactive. While serving as China Managing Director for Gameloft, he helped publish and localize games including Ice Age Village, Iron Man 3, Order & Chaos, Thor 2, Spider-Man Unlimited, Dungeon Hunter 4 and Despicable Me 2, which went on to become the company's biggest seller of all time.
Mr. Lerner, founder, Chairman and CEO of Millennium Films and Nu Image Inc., is one of the most successful and prolific independent filmmakers ever, producing and distributing over 300 films worldwide in the past 20 years between his Nu Image and Millennium Films labels. The Expendables franchise, starring a Who's Who of action heroes including Sylvester Stallone, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Antonio Banderas, Wesley Snipes, Mel Gibson, Harrison Ford, Bruce Willis, Chuck Norris, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Ronda Rousey, is one of his most beloved and successful ever. The Expendables films have achieved surging box office popularity in China where Expendables 3 ranked as one of the top-grossing Hollywood films last year.
Lionsgate has launched a number of recent initiatives in the game space, investing in Telltale Games and Finnish gaming platform Next Games, partnering with Starbreeze Studios on exclusive downloadable John Wick content that contributed to the film's highly successful launch and developing television shows based on iconic properties Candy Crush and Titanfall.
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 such critically-acclaimed hits as the multiple Emmy Award-winning Mad Men and Nurse Jackie, the broadcast network series Nashville, the syndication success The Wendy Williams Show, the hit series Orange is the New Black, the critically-acclaimed drama Manhattan and the breakout series The Royals.
Its feature film business has been fueled by such recent successes as the blockbuster first three installments of The Hunger Games franchise, the first two installments of the Divergent franchise, The Age of Adaline, CBS/Lionsgate's The DUFF, John Wick, Now You See Me, Roadside Attractions' Love & Mercy and A Most Wanted Man, 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
ABOUT MILLENNIUM FILMS
Millennium Films is one of the longest-running independent film companies in the history of Hollywood, with 20 years and more than 300 movies to its credit. The company now produces, finances and handles international sales for 5-8 star-driven movies per year, generally with budgets between $20 million and $80 million.It is best known for The Expendables series (more than half a billion dollars in worldwide box office) and the recent hit Olympus Has Fallen.)Millennium Films is run by co-founders Avi Lerner and Trevor Short, and a senior executive team that includes Mark Gill (president), Boaz Davidson (head of development and creative affairs), John Thompson (head of production), Jeffrey Greenstein (head of international sales) and Lonnie Ramati (head of business affairs).The company's current slate includes London Has Fallen, starring Gerard Butler, Aaron Eckhart and Morgan Freeman, Mechanic Resurrection starring Jason Statham, Tommy Lee Jones, Jessica Alba and Michelle Yeoh, and Criminal starring Kevin Costner, Gary Oldman, Tommy Lee Jones, Ryan Reynolds, Alice Eve, and Gal Gadot. Millennium also operates full-service studios in Shreveport, Louisiana, and Sofia, Bulgaria. The company was founded in 1992 under the name Nu Image, Inc.
ABOUT FIFTH JOURNEY
Fifth Journey is the preeminent Hong Kong-based game publisher located at the intersection of Hollywood and Mobile Gaming. Founded in 2014 by Eric Tan with offices in Hong Kong and California, Fifth Journey develops authentic, "fan-first" mobile games based on Hollywood's top brands and franchises. They are currently developing The Expendables with Lionsgate and have another unannounced title in development with Universal Pictures to be released in 2016.
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Peter D. Wilkes
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