Fox, New Regency renew distrib pact

Partnership will now extend its current deal

Fox Filmed Entertainment has announced a nine-year extension of its exclusive distribution pact with Arnon Milchan’s New Regency Prods.

Partnership will now extend its current pact, which was set to expire in 2013, to May 2022.

New deal continues a relationship between the companies, dating back to 1998, under which Fox distributes New Regency pics worldwide. Since then, Regency has produced 55 films and generated box office of more than $5.3 billion.

Regency, led by co-chairmen Bob Harper and Hutch Parker, had seven production starts in 2010. Parker, a former vice chairman at Fox, exited his post in 2008 to co-head New Regency.

In a joint statement with Fox toppers Tom Rothman and Jim Gianopulos, Harper and Parker said the company will continue to be a high-output supplier, and they will also eye a return to the television business this year.

The shingle previously produced “Malcolm in the Middle,” now in syndication, “Cedric the Entertainer” and “Roswell.”

Company also developed a TV series based on “Mr. and Mrs. Smith,” the highest-grossing New Regency/Fox film, in 2007 but has not put the show into production.

“Arnon Milchan is a multifaceted, passionate enthusiast for all he touches,” said News Corp. chairman Rupert Murdoch in the statement.

“He is an Israeli businessman, an Israeli political enthusiast, a Hollywood producer and a remarkable art collector. He is a loyal and generous friend who also happens to be a great long-term and trustworthy partner.”

Fox parent company News Corp. owns a 20% stake in New Regency.

Regency and Fox most recently partnered for the Ed Zwick-helmed romantic comedy “Love and Other Drugs,” starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Anne Hathaway.

“Big Mommas: Like Father, Like Son,” a reboot of the “Big Momma” franchise, will unspool Feb. 18.

The two companies have also paired for the Anna Faris-Chris Evans comedy “What’s Your Number” and “Monte Carlo,” co-produced with Fox 2000.

In addition Regency will partner with Fox 2000 for the next Alvin and the Chipmunks pic, “Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked,” and is currently shooting “Now,” a thriller from writer-director Andrew Niccol that’s slated for the fall.

New Regency and Fox also have plans to reboot the 2003 Marvel superhero pic “Daredevil.”

“Extending our long-term, happy Fox-Regency ‘marriage’ will take us through our 20th anniversary — and beyond — and how many Hollywood unions can make that claim?” Rothman and Gianopulos said in a statement.

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