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Anchor Bay Signs 3-Year Distribution Deal With Gravitas

Anchor Bay Entertainment has signed a three-year distribution agreement with Gravitas Ventures, covering Blu-ray and DVD distribution rights in North America to a dozen titles a year, Variety has learned exclusively.

Among the first releases included in the agreement are “Manny,” a Manny Pacquiao documentary; “Always Woodstock,” starring Ryan Guzman, Brittany Snow and Katey Sagal; and “Lovesick,” starring Matt LeBlanc, Ali Larter and Chevy Chase.

Gravitas Ventures is an extraordinarily innovative company with an outstanding array of independent content,” said Bill Clark, president of Anchor Bay.

Clark told Variety that the deal reflects Anchor Bay’s strategy of acquiring slates rather than single titles. The company, a subsidary of Starz, already has long-term distribution agreements in place for select programming with the Weinstein Co., AMC Networks and Radius.

Clark said the moves reflect his bullishness about the overall home entertainment business despite an 11.9% decline in DVD revenues in the fourth quarter to $4.74 billion, according to DEG statistics. Blu-ray revenues slid 8.5% to $2.19 billion.

Clark asserted that from 2012 – 2014 consumer spending for the industry declined while it increased for Anchor Bay, both overall and for catalog. “We are looking forward to a record-breaking 2015, if the TV and movie gods cooperate,” he added.

Recent Gravitas releases include “Ping Pong Summer” with Susan Sarandon; “The Longest Week,” starring Jason Bateman and Olivia Wilde; “Felony,” starring Joel Edgerton; “Backstreet Boys: Show ‘Em What You’re Made of”; and Spike Lee’s “Da Sweet Blood of Jesus.”

“Anchor Bay Entertainment’s first-rate relationships with retailers, as well as their inventive and customized marketing programs, make them an ideal partner for us,” said Nolan Gallagher, CEO of Gravitas Ventures. “We look forward to a long and productive relationship.”

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