News follows siblings' joint acquisition of Pacificor
The Ellison siblings are heading toward a fifth “Terminator” movie.David Ellison’s Skydance Prods. and Megan Ellison’s Annapurna Pictures have agreed to partner on the next “Terminator” following their joint acquistion of rights from Pacificor. The two company heads will produce and Dana Goldberg and Paul Schwake from Skydance will serve as executive producers. Pacificor, a Santa Barbara-based investment fund with no feature film experience, acquired the rights in a bankruptcy court auction in early 2010 over objections from Sony and Lionsgate. Pacificor agreed to pay $29.5 million, along with a provision for payment to Halycon of $5 million per film for any sequel. Halcyon paid Mario Kassar $30 million for the “Terminator” rights in 2007, but then Halcyon filed for Chapter 11 in 2009 as a result of a dispute with Pacificor, which had financed the acquisition. The “Terminator” assets include the rights to future pics, TV series, DVDs and merchandise. “Terminator Salvation,” the fourth film in the franchise, was produced by Halcyon toppers Victor Kubicek and Derek Anderson with Warner Bros. handling domestic distribution and Sony taking international. It carried a production pricetag of about $200 million and took in $371 million worldwide in 2009. A spokeswoman for Annapurna said that under new copyright rules, North American rights to The Terminator franchise could revert back to creator James Cameron in 2019 — 35 years after the original “Terminator” was released. Annapurna’s credit include “The Master,” “Lawless,” “Zero Dark Thirty” and “Killing Them Softly.” Skydance has a co-fiancing deal at Paramount, where it’s produced “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol,” “Jack Reacher,” “World War Z” and the “G.I. Joe,” “Jack Ryan” and “Star Trek” sequels.