Santa Monica company to handle features, home entertainment releases

Citing cost savings, Lionsgate has consolidated media buying for the Lionsgate and Summit film labels into the Mindshare agency following a four-month review.

Mindshare’s office in Santa Monica will handle media planning and buying activities for features as well as all home entertainment releases by Lionsgate, Summit, Roadside Attractions and Pantelion Films.

“By combining our media related services in one company, Lionsgate will immediately see significant savings which will impact the studio’s bottom line, achieve economies of scale that can be leveraged across our feature film entities and allow us additional resources to market and distribute our films in North America,” said motion picture group co-chiefs Rob Friedman and Patrick Wachsberger.

The studio did not disclose a precise number for the savings but a person with knowledge indicated that the annual figure would be at least $10 million annually.

Lionsgate bought Summit in a $412.5 million leveraged buyout in January 2012, then began its media buying agency review process in September with the two incumbents — Initiative Media for Lionsgate and Mindshare for Summit — invited along with New York-based Horizon Media.

Lionsgate is focusing its feature film activities on finding a new young-adult franchise as has high hopes for its March 2014 release of “Divergent.” Key upcoming films include Lionsgate’s “The Hunger Games: Catching Fire” on Nov. 22 and Summit’s “Red 2″ and “Ender’s Game,” opening Nov. 1.

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