PARIS — Driven by the success of Scarlett Johansson’s action pic “Lucy,” EuropaCorp has posted a 46% increase to $122 million ($98 million) in net profit over the first half of its financial year 2014-2015.
Released by Universal in the U.S. and a string of foreign territories, the $40 million-budgeted “Lucy,” which has so far grossed $459 million, helped EuropaCorp achieve a healthy operating margin of $35 million — or 29% of revenue — primarily from international sales and French distribution revenue.
“Lucy” was distributed in France on Aug. 6 by EuropaCorp and grossed over $38 million from 5 million tickets sold as of Sept. 30. This performance helped bring EuropaCorp’s theatrical biz to $20 million. Over the first half of the year, EuropaCorp also released “Brick Mansions,” “Fastlife” and “Saint Laurent.”
International sales reached $47.5 million, repping 38.9% of total revenue. Besides “Lucy,” the figure was boosted by deals on “Brick Mansions” and “The Homesman,” as well as royalties from catalogue films, notably “The Family,” “Three Days To Kill” and “Colombiana.”
The company added that the international sales business on “Lucy” wasn’t fully accounted for during this financial report.
In line with its strategy to ramp up its number of English-language pics and feed its new L.A.-based distribution venture RED, EuropaCorp stepped up its investment to $97.8 million (from last year’s from $56.5 million) in film and TV projects.
EuropaCorp’s TV biz grew 55% to $22.5 million, bolstered by royalties from “Taxi Brooklyn” and the third season of “No Limit,” among other TV titles.
Going forward, EuropaCorp, which recently obtained a five-year credit facility of $600 million, will release “Taken 3” in January and will distribute “The Transporter Legacy” in the U.S. via RED on June 19.