Summit

Distribution Reports

With the opening of “Twilight” last November, Summit’s immediate future as a fully operational mini-major was solidified. Pic reached blockbuster status, grossing $384 million worldwide. Summit showed it was able to rival the studios at the franchise game and put fellow indie mini-

majors Lionsgate, MGM and Overture on notice. It immediately put a second “Twilight” pic, “New Moon,” in the pipeline and opens it later this year.

Distrib also did some major housekeeping in the past year, including tapping Par alum Nancy Kirkpatrick as president of worldwide marketing. Studio entered into an exclusive output deal with Showtime Networks, which will air up to 42 Summit titles between 2008 and 2012. The third major move: Summit inked a non-exclusive distribution deal with producer-financier Participant Media that runs through 2013.

There were other notable box office moments for Summit after “Twilight,” including Nicolas Cage sci-fi thriller “Knowing,” which grossed $80 million. Summit also managed to break the curse that has plagued Iraq War films. Kathryn Bigelow’s “The Hurt Locker” is one of the top grossing specialty films of the year, cuming more than $11 million.

Summit did have some misfires. Musical-driven teen comedy “Bandslam,” released in mid-August, couldn’t find its aud, despite good reviews. Pic, still in release, cumed $5 million. Nor did 3-D toon “Fly Me to the Moon” get much beyond the launchpad, cuming $9.3 million on medium-wide rollout. Summit tries again with a toon on Sept. 11, when it releases “Astro Boy.”

B.O.: $351 million

TOP PIC: “Twilight” ($191.5 million)

TOPPERS: Rob Friedman, co-chair-CEO; Patrick Wachsberger, co-chair and prexy; Richie Fay, prexy, distribution

UP NEXT: “Sorority Row” (Sept. 11), “Astro Boy” (Oct. 23), “Twilight Saga: The New Moon” (Nov. 20)

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