GlobalGate will produce and distribute local-language films in markets around the world. Lionsgate said Monday it has partnered with international entertainment executives Paul Presburger, William Pfeiffer and Clifford Werber to launch GlobalGate.
GlobalGate’s consortium partners include Belga (Benelux), Gaumont (France), Kadokawa (Japan), Lotte (Korea), Nordisk Film (Scandinavia), Televisa/Videocine (Mexico), TME (Turkey) and Tobis (Germany). It expects partners in China, India and other key markets to join soon.
Lionsgate, best known as home of young adult franchises “Twilight” and “The Hunger Games,” made the announcement a week before the opening of the Cannes Film Festival.
The consortium will identify third-party properties in the U.S. and internationally for development and production as local-language films, which will be distributed by the consortium’s partners and co-financed by the affiliated GlobalGate Fund.
“GlobalGate is the first to apply such a distributor-aligned, equity financing structure to local-language film production on a global scale,” the new entity asserted.
“I’ve known the GlobalGate team for 25 years, and their experience, relationships and entrepreneurial skills will help establish the venture as a unique player in local-language film production,” said Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer. “By aligning ourselves with some of the top content companies in the world, GlobalGate provides us with an opportunity to grow our presence in local-language films, leverage the content in our library and further mine exciting new IP and talent around the world.”
Presburger will continue as CEO of Lionsgate’s Pantelion Films and will focus his energies within GlobalGate on intellectual property to be produced for Latin America and the Latino market in the U.S., as well as on utilizing Pantelion’s intellectual property within the GlobalGate network. Pfeiffer will continue as a senior advisor to Lionsgate will also complement his GlobalGate responsibilities.
The three executives have already been involved with local-language films including: the Mexican remake of the German hit comedy “Fack Ju Goehte”; remakes in China, France and other territories of Mexico’s comedy “Instructions Not Included,” the highest-grossing Spanish-language film ever released in Mexico and the U.S.; remakes of Brazil’s comedy “Se Eu Fosse Voce” in several territories; and Germany’s family franchise “Fuenf Freunde,” based on Enid Blyton’s iconic book series.
Lionsgate noted that the market share of local-language films is expanding in territories around the world, currently topping 90% in India, nearly 60% of China and Turkey, more than 55% in Japan and 50% in Korea. Local language films also comprise more than 40% of the box office in France, 30% in Denmark and a 27% market share in Germany.
“Local language films are competing successfully with Hollywood studio releases in market after market, representing a large and growing share of the box office in key territories around the world,” said Pfeiffer, Werber and Presburger.
Gaumont’s CEO Sidonie Dumas said, “As Gaumont expands its footprint within and outside of France with production of both French and English language films alongside Gaumont’s worldwide television production, our alignment with GlobalGate and its impressive array of partners promises to complement our strategies.”