MGM slates Goldwyn, Orion pix

MGM went out Monday with a full slate of feature releases through the next year, nailing down dates for pics in the pipeline from newly acquired Orion Pictures and Goldwyn Entertainment.

The acquisitions add 10 pictures to MGM/UA’s slate, making a total of 19 titles. But there are no obvious blockbusters on the order of its next Bond pic, “Tomorrow Never Dies,” the studio’s next big pic.

MGM distribution and marketing execs say they’ve fully integrated the Orion and Goldwyn films into the release schedule, and will show no marketing favoritism to any pic —regardless of production parentage.

“There are no stepchildren in this deal,” said Larry Gleason, president of worldwide theatrical distribution for MGM/UA. “All the films will be treated the same way.”

Goldwyn president Meyer Gottlieb, who worked with MGM/UA president of worldwide marketing Jerry Rich and MGM distribution president Larry Gleason to set the release schedule, was upbeat about the merger’s smooth marketing meld.

“They agreed that our releasing plans were dead-on for the Goldwyn pictures,” Gottlieb said.

Rich and Gleason said the MGM/UA organization was able to use nearly all the marketing materials created at the original production companies.

For MGM, struggling to regain its stride after losing several months last year to ownership upheavals, much is riding on the new schedule.MGM officials said they look forward to working with this amalgam of movies.

“We’ve proven over the years that we really thrive on the diversity,” Rich said. “We’ve done well with a picture like a Bond on one end and a ‘Leaving Las Vegas’ on the other.”

Other pics in the lineup include Orion’s “Gang Related,” with James Belushi, and the star-filled “Hoodlum,” with Laurence Fishburne, Tim Roth, Vanessa Williams and Andy Garcia.

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