Network signs deal for 42 theatrical titles

Twilight” is coming to Showtime.

Pic is part of an exclusive output deal the pay cabler has signed with Summit Entertainment that will include up to 42 of Summit’s titles theatrically released between 2008 and 2012 running on the network.

“We’re excited that ‘Twilight’ is obviously going to be a huge franchise, and that there will probably be several more of those films coming as part of the deal,” said Showtime chairman and CEO Matthew Blank.

Distributed by Summit, the vampire-themed “Twilight” has grossed more than $120 million domestically since its Nov. 21 release.

The first output pact of its kind for Summit, deal also covers a 2009 studio slate that includes the Alex Proyas-helmed “Knowing” starring Nicolas Cage and Rose Byrne, and “Push” starring Chris Evans, Dakota Fanning and Djimon Hounsou.

Deal comes six months after Showtime’s main suppliers of theatrical films, Paramount, Lionsgate and MGM, decided to stop selling films to the network and instead start their own premium movie channel with MTV Networks.

Showtime has since signed a seven-year output deal with The Weinstein Company.

In addition to Weinstein and Summit titles, Showtime will still have access to Lionsgate and MGM titles released through this year, and Paramount titles released through 2007.

“This takes us many years out in terms of our film needs,” Blank noted. “Our objective all along was to bring the cost of acquiring theatrical films in line with the business of our network, and I think we accomplished that.”

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