Exex miss bonuses in tame year for Lion

SEC-filed proxy lists salaries, extras for employees

MGM chairman-CEO Alex Yemenidjian and other top execs missed bonuses last year as the Lion failed to reach certain performance marks.

Yemenidjian, 47, reaped a base salary of $2.5 million plus some new stock options, according to a company proxy statement filed Wednesday with the Securities & Exchange Commission. In 2001, he earned the same salary and a $1.2 million bonus.

Last year, the studio topper was awarded options to buy 1.5 million shares of common stock at $16.02 a share until 2012. The performance goals that MGM failed to reach had been pre-established by the board’s compensation committee and included cash-flow and film performance targets.

The proxy statement shows vice chairman Chris McGurk was paid $2.2 million, up from $2.1 million a year earlier when he also drew a $1 million bonus. McGurk, 46, was awarded 900,000 options in 2002.

In April 2002, Yemenidjian and McGurk were awarded three-year contract extensions running to 2007.

MGM controlling shareholder Kirk Kerkorian, who holds no exec position at the company, has a 66% stake in the company with some 163.9 million shares. Yemenidjian’s 8.1 million shares rep a 3.2% interest, and McGurk’s 2.8 million shares amount to a 1.1% stake.

Proxy circulated after the close of market trading, as MGM shares fell 22¢ to $10.45.

The studio has set its annual meeting for 10 a.m. May 14 at the St. Regis Hotel in Century City. Lion is set to move to that high-rise neighborhood at the end of May, leaving only a home entertainment unit at its current lair in Santa Monica.

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