Warner Bros. prexy Semel signs up for five more years

Warner Bros. president Terry Semel, joining chairman Robert Daly, has come to terms on a five-year contract extension. This assures a continuation of the leadership that has piloted the studio through one of its most successful periods in its history.

While the studio would not comment on the negotiations, Daly reportedly worked out his contract extension several months ago; Semel finalized his new contract more recently.

The negotiations for the two executives began in May ’92. Although the deals were not completed as soon as many expected, sources insist there was never much question the two would stay at Warner Bros.

Semel reportedly had been approached by Credit Lyonnais, which owns MGM, to take over the beleaguered studio. Some sources have insisted he came close to signing a deal with MGM that would give him a sizable equity position with the studio. Still, most observers maintain there was little chance he would leave the “sure thing” of Warner Bros. for the insecurity of MGM.

WB is having another successful year, capped off with this summer’s releases of “Dave,””Made in America””Free Willy” and the runaway hit “The Fugitive.” The October release of “Demolition Man” and the holiday-season release of “A Perfect World” and “The Pelican Brief” should help WB maintain its winning ways.

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