‘Hunger Games,’ homevid power Lionsgate revs

But studio swings to fiscal Q1 loss on higher marketing costs

“The Hunger Games” flooded Lionsgate’s coffers as motion picture revenue more than doubled last quarter to $406 million.

“Cabin in the Woods,” “What to Expect When You’re Expecting” and buoyant home entertainment business also boosted sales. Total revenue jumped 81% to $481 million.

But the studio swung to a loss of $44 million from a $10.3 million profit as theatrical marketing costs increased by $90 million thanks to five releases in the quarter vs. only one the year before. All five are expected to be profitable, Lionsgate said.

Earnings were also squeezed by higher stock-based compensation from a boost in the share price, costs from integrating Summit Entertainment and a non-cash charge for early retirement of a significant portion of Summit’s term loan debt.

Theatrical revenue of $138 million was five times the year-earlier number on “Hunger Games,” the 12th highest-grossing domestic release of all time.

Home entertainment revenue from pictures and TV rose to $145 million from $93 million driven by five major DVD and digital releases.

Television revenue, included in motion pictures, was $37 million, down 14%. TV production revenue dipped 5% to $65 million on fewer contributions from the company’s Debmar-Mercury syndication arm, offset in part by increased digital media revenue from “Weeds” and “Mad Men” in their home entertainment windows.

U.K. revenue nearly tripled to $33 million on “The Hunger Games” and “Salmon Fishing in the Yemen.”

International motion picture revenue outside the U.K. quadrupled to $49 million, fueled by “The Hunger Games” the “Twilight” films, “Cabin in the Woods,” “What to Expect” and “Man on a Ledge.”

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