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World Briefs

UNITED KINGDOM

Telewest Communications is picking up fellow cable operator NTL’s 50% stake in the Cable London franchise for £428 million ($685 million).

The deal is part of the legacy of NTL’s 1998 takeover of Comcast, of which Cable London was a part. Telewest, one of the owners of Cable London, retained the option to buy out NTL’s stake, and has now exercised that right.

Once NTL’s $13 billion takeover of the residential business of Cable & Wireless Communications is concluded, NTL and Telewest will be the two remaining U.K. cablers. Many observers expect NTL will eventually also acquire Telewest.

GERMANY

Constantin Film has set its IPO for Sept. 13 on Frankfurt’s Neue Markt.

One of Germany’s leading film production companies and distributors, the company is releasing the new Til Schweiger starrer “Der grosse Bargozy” in October and has been behind such pics as this year’s hit “Asterix and Obelix vs. Cesar” and 1994’s hit “Maybe, Maybe Not” (with Schweiger).

Constantin, whose shareholders include producer Bernd Eichinger, media mogul Leo Kirch and Munich-based EM.TV & Merchandising, recently took a controlling stake in German production outfit Olga Film.

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