Jeff Robinov already has offers from Chinese financiers and other investors for more than $100 million to launch his new production company, say those familiar with the matter.
The former Warner Bros. pic chief is looking to raise a total of $200 million to $300 million in equity and an equal amount in debt.
Variety has just learned that ongoing negotiations with billionaire industrialist Len Blavatnik to be the lead investor are over, according to a well-placed source close to the situation.
The 55-year-old Robinov is also in deep discussions with Sony Pictures about signing on as an investor in his shingle and to market and distribute his movies.
Robinov is ideally looking to raise a sizable fund of independent money to produce a slate of films that would complement a studio’s annual lineup. The executive has also talked to Fox about a studio partnership, but he’s more likely to land at Sony.
Amid an increasingly strained economic climate in which production and marketing costs continue to rise, studios are reducing the number of films they bankroll on their own. Partnering up with a self-funded production company such as Robinov’s helps mitigate some of that risk.
During his tenure at Warner’s, Robinov had the authority to decide which films would get greenlit at Hollywood’s largest studio. Prior to leaving the studio last June after losing a bid for the chairmanship to home entertainment chief Kevin Tsujihara, he oversaw such hit movies as “Gravity,” “Argo” and the “Harry Potter” franchise. His years of relationships with top filmmakers and access to stars makes Robinov attractive to investors.