×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Global Road on Verge of Bankruptcy Filing (EXCLUSIVE)

Global Road Entertainment, the fledgling studio that sought to straddle the U.S. and China, will soon declare bankruptcy, sources tell Variety. A filing could come as early as this week.

The company has been on the brink of insolvency since Bank of America and other lenders seized control of the studio two weeks ago. The banks have since laid off nearly 50 employees and tried to sell several finished films.

Donald Tang, a former Bear Stearns banker based in China, formed the company a year ago when his Tang Media Partners acquired Open Road Films. Tang had purchased foreign sales and production company IM Global the year prior, and aimed to combine the two to create a global production and distribution firm. Tang has since been seeking to raise additional financing, either from his Chinese backers or other sources. He has struck out. Tang Media Partners had 144 employees before staff reductions took place.

Even as Global Road’s film side of the business has been taken over by lenders, its television and international sales groups have continued to operate independently. It’s unclear how Global Road will approach bankruptcy, but knowledgeable sources believe it is unlikely to reorganize. One scenario being discussed would have the company liquidate its movie assets, and sell its sales and television businesses.

Open Road was struggling at the time it was sold to Tang, and in need of a cash infusion to release its movie slate. The studio debuted “Hotel Artemis” in June, which grossed just $6.7 million. Its most recent pic, “A.X.L.,” bombed with a $2.8 million showing in its opening weekend.

In early August, Global Road removed its next film, “City of Lies,” from the release schedule. At the time, there was speculation that the movie was pulled due to the erratic behavior of its star, Johnny Depp. However, lender Bank Leumi filed suit last week, alleging that the true reason was that Global Road could not afford to pay the $10 million it would cost to promote the film. The bank is seeking to recoup millions in minimum guarantees from Global Road and Miramax, which holds the TV rights to the movie. Global Road is said to be struggling under the weight of other debts as well.

A spokesman for Global Road declined to comment.

More Film

  • Mediapro Unveils The Mediapro Studio, With

    Spain's Mediapro Unveils New Studio, With 34 Series in Production (EXCLUSIVE)

    The Mediapro Group – the Barcelona-based multinational co-founded by Jaume Roures – is unveiling The Mediapro Studio, with 34 scripted series already in production worldwide. The new production company will be based in Fuencarral, northern Madrid, just a few miles from Netflix’s soon-to-open European production hub. It will be overseen by Javier Méndez as chief [...]

  • Fox Searchlight logo

    Film News Roundup: Fox Searchlight Launches Searchlight Shorts

    In today’s film news roundup, Fox Searchlight starts a shorts channel, Uma Thurman signs with ICM and Miramax signs animation exec Michael Lachance. SEARCHLIGHT SHORTS Fox Searchlight Pictures’ chairmen Nancy Utley and Stephen Gilula have announced the launch of “Searchlight Shorts” as a collection of short films. The shorts are available on Fox Searchlight’s YouTube [...]

  • ImMature - cr: MX Player

    Indian Streamers Ramp up Original Productions

    Ever since global streaming giants Amazon Prime Video and Netflix entered the Indian OTT space in 2016, the conversation around original series has mostly revolved around them, thanks in part to market leader 21st Century Fox’s Hotstar’s circumspect attitude at the time about producing content. Netflix had great success with “Sacred Games,” while Amazon rode [...]

  • WGA Agents Contract Tug of War

    Hollywood Agents, Writers Guild Make Little Progress in Talks

    Leaders of Hollywood agencies and the Writers Guild of America made little progress in Tuesday meeting to negotiate proposed rule revisions to how agents represent writers. The WGA said after the meeting — the fifth since Feb. 5 — that talks would resume later this week but did not give a specific day. “The Agencies [...]

  • Village Rockstars

    Female Filmmakers Are a Growing Voice in India

    The Indian film industry has historically been a male-dominated one, but the winds of change are blowing across the country, albeit slowly. Better-served than the rest of the country is the Mumbai-based Hindi-language industry, where there are several active female filmmakers including Zoya Akhtar (“Gully Boy”), Reema Kagti (“Gold”), Leena Yadav (“Rajma Chawal”), Gauri Shinde [...]

  • Florence Pugh

    Scarlett Johansson's 'Black Widow' Movie Adds Florence Pugh

    “Black Widow’s” web may soon be growing. Sources tell Variety that Florence Pugh is in talks to join Scarlett Johansson’s standalone superhero film. Pugh has been on the hot list for this second lead role since last fall, but Marvel wanted to open up the field to other actresses at the beginning of the year. [...]

  • Mira Lesmana Sets up Indonesia Remake

    Mira Lesmana Sets Up Indonesian Remake of CJ's 'Sunny'

    Indonesia’s Miles Film and Korea’s CJ Entertainment are to co-produce an Indonesian remake of Korean hit “Sunny.” The film is a female-driven dramedy about a group of adult friends who reunite 20 years after high school. Directed by Kang Hyoung-chul, “Sunny” was one of the highest-grossing movies in Korea when it was released in 2011. [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content