×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Byron Allen Seeks Love for Independent Movie Studios at CinemaCon

Media mogul Byron Allen made a strong pitch to the nation’s theater owners Wednesday to support the independent movie studios — such as his own Entertainment Studios Motion Pictures.

Allen appeared a year after ESMP launched with the shark thriller “47 Meters Down,” which grossed an impressive $44 million domestically last year. He had bought the movie months earlier from Bob Weinstein at his Malibu beach house for $3 million after becoming convinced that shark movies always perform well.

“What we did with ’47 Meters Down,’ we need to do 100 times over,” Allen told attendees at a breakfast event at CinemaCon at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.

Allen, best known as a producer of syndicated TV programming, established ESMP through the 2015 purchase of Freestyle Releasing. He said Wednesday that ESMP is aiming to fill the niche of releasing mid-budget films that the Big Six studios have become less likely to handle.

“Our vision is the same as in TV — find a need and fill it,” he said. “Studios are not interested in $30 million movies.”

He also said that he opposed any shortening of the time between theatrical and home video release and drew applause after saying, “I don’t like the whispers and the conversations from studios who want to reduce your window. That’s unacceptable and I’m here to fight for it and defend it. Let’s not talk 90 days, how about 120 days?”

Allen said that ESMP was able to generate solid performance from Christian Bale’s western “Hostiles,” which has grossed nearly $30 million, by focusing on the flyover states in the middle of the country. Its historical drama “Chappaquiddick” has hit nearly $15 million.

ESMP also screened footage from the upcoming Keanu Reeves sci-fier “Replicas,” which opens Aug. 24.

Allen recently bought the Weather Channel for $300 million.

RELATED CONTENT

More Film

  • Woolsey Fire Malibu

    Many Malibu Areas Still Off-Limits for Filming After Fire

    The California Film Commission has maintained its ban on filming in several Malibu areas hit by the massive Woolsey fire in Southern California last month. The commission announced Tuesday that due to continued clean-up and repair work along Pacific Coast Highway, permits for filming on the highway are not being issued at this time. PCH [...]

  • Against the Clock

    Film News Roundup: Andy Garcia's Spy Thriller 'Against the Clock' Bought by Gravitas

    In today’s film news roundup, Andy Garcia’s spy thriller is sold, “Battlestar Galactica” gets a screenwriter, and Brooklyn Decker gets an award. ACQUISITION Gravitas Ventures has acquired North American rights to spy thriller “Against the Clock,” starring Andy Garcia, Dianna Agron (“Glee”), and Justin Bartha, Variety has learned exclusively. The film, formerly titled “Headlock,” is [...]

  • 'Pacific Rim Uprising' film premiere

    John Boyega in Talks to Star in Legal Drama 'A Naked Singularity'

    “Star Wars” actor John Boyega is in talks to star in the legal drama “A Naked Singularity” with Ridley Scott’s Scott Free Productions on board to produce. The movie is based on Sergio De La Pava’s debut novel, which centers on a successful New York public defender whose life begins to unravel after he loses [...]

  • Penny Marshall Dead Obit

    Remembering Penny Marshall, Who Forged Her Own Path and Paved the Way for Others

    She was a natural comedian — fearless and funny, willing to trade on her natural Bronx brogue to craft a sassy and street-wise character that was tailor-made for sitcoms. But Penny Marshall, who died Monday night at the age of 75, proved throughout her long career that she had so much more in the way [...]

  • Aquaman 2018

    'Aquaman' Outpacing 'Wonder Woman' in Fandango Pre-Sales

    Pre-sales of “Aquaman,” which opens on Thursday night, are outpacing “Wonder Woman” at the same point in the advance ticket sales cycle on online ticketer Fandango. “Wonder Woman” opened with $103 million domestically during the June 2 to June 4, 2017, weekend on its way to a $412 million North American total for Warner Bros. “Aquaman,” [...]

  • European Union Placeholder

    Europe, Hollywood Hail Landmark E.U. Territorial Licensing Agreement

    Industry organizations and major companies in Europe and Hollywood welcomed Tuesday a high-level European Union agreement that in large part preserves producers’ ability to sell movies and TV shows on an exclusive territory-by-territory basis. Territorial licensing is a financial backbone of the film and TV business in Europe. Recognition of such licensing came last Thursday in [...]

  • Box Office: 'Aquaman,' 'Mary Poppins Returns'

    Box Office: 'Aquaman' Battles 'Mary Poppins Returns' in Crowded Holiday Weekend

    It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and the most competitive time at the multiplexes. This weekend sees two very different heroes vying for the box office crown with “Aquaman” and “Mary Poppins Returns” both eyeing sizable debuts. “Mary Poppins Returns” is getting a head start by opening on Wednesday, though estimates show “Aquaman” [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content