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Jerry Bruckheimer Finalizes Producing Deal with Paramount

Warner Bros. was also in the running

Jerry Bruckheimer is going back to Paramount Pictures after the two side reached a three-year, first-look agreement for theatrical films that will begin in April 2014.

The 70-year-old veteran producer has been looking to secure a new home for his movie releases since October, when Disney opted not to renew his deal beyond this year.

Jerry Bruckheimer is one of the most creative and prolific producers in motion picture history,” said Paramount Pictures Chairman and CEO Brad Grey. “His signature style has attracted huge global audiences and we are thrilled to have him back in the Paramount family.”

“It is great to be back at Paramount,” Bruckheimer said. “I look forward to working with Brad Grey and his entire team.”

Bruckheimer has a handful of films in development at Paramount, including sequels to “Beverly Hills Cop” and “Top Gun,” the latter of which Skydance is also attached to finance and produce.

Bruckheimer had been in discussions with several studios, including Sony Pictures and Warner Bros., but ultimately decided on Paramount, where he and his late producing partner Don Simpson had a heyday in the 1980s with such hits as “Top Gun,” two “Beverly Hills Cop” films, “Flashdance” and “American Gigolo.”

It was announced in October that Bruckheimer would be ending his 18 year-long run at Disney this month. Early on, he had much success with such action blockbusters as “Armageddon,” “The Rock,” “Con Air” and “Crimson Tide” and later with the “National Treasure” films and the “Pirates of the Caribbean” franchise with four films generating $3.7 billion at the global box office over eight years. Bruckheimer also had his share of costly flops at Disney, among them “G-Force,” “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice,” “Prince of Persia” and most recently “The Lone Ranger,” which lost Disney nearly $200 million.

Bruckheimer’s arrival at Paramount makes for a crowded lot of high-profile, largely male producers including Michael Bay, Lorenzo di Bonaventura, J.J. Abrams and David Ellison. Unlike Ellison, Bruckheimer is not bringing any of his own financing to the table. Some industry insiders wonder how the concentration of producers of testosterone-driven movies will all fare under one roof.

The producer’s next pic, “Beware the Night,” a horror movie, bows through Sony’s Screen Gems on July 2, 2014.

After an off year with such misses as “The Guilt Trip,” “Fun Size” and “Rise of the Guardians,” Paramount has had a stronger 2013 with “Star Trek Into Darkness,” “World War Z” and “Jackass Presents: Bad Grandpa.” The Viacom-owned studio will debut Martin Scorsese’s much-anticipated “The Wolf of Wall Street,” starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill, on Christmas Day.

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