Legendary Entertainment has closed a $1 billion senior secured revolving credit facility led by J.P. Morgan.
The financing was announced Thursday by Legendary chief executive officer Joshua Grode. Joining J.P. Morgan is a syndicate of entertainment banks, including Union Bank, Bank of America, Comerica Bank, CIT, Fifth Third Bank, and SunTrust Bank.
The new facility replaces a prior $585 million credit facility with more favorable terms. Combined with its cash on the balance sheet on the closing of the new facility, Legendary will have approximately $2 billion of liquidity.
Legendary said the new facility was significantly oversubscribed and the participation of the entertainment lenders is confirmation of Legendary’s strength as the studio’s film and television slates continue to ramp up under new management.
Grode was named late last year as the new CEO of Legendary Entertainment, nearly a year after the departure of founder Thomas Tull. He had served as an adviser to Legendary and its parent company, the Dalian Wanda Group, which had bought Legendary in 2016 and has been undergoing a retrenchment.
Grode, who joined Legendary just over 100 days ago, stated: “We are executing the business plan that we mapped when I joined Legendary at the start of the year. This new facility and the support from the financial institutions that power our industry is validation of our strategy and another major step in cementing Legendary’s position as one of the premiere content creation companies in the world. We are continuing to be heads down on the creative work with our world-class creative team, with Mary Parent driving the film business and both Mary and Nick Pepper energizing our television business.”
“Legendary is an important name in the industry, with a strong balance sheet and deep support from the entertainment banking community that enables robust investment across its content platform,” said David Shaheen, head of entertainment industries for J.P. Morgan’s Corporate Client Banking Group.
Legendary’s “Skyscraper,” starring Dwayne Johnson, is set to be released on July 13. The company is also in post-production on “Godzilla: King of the Monsters” and “Detective Pikachu.” It’s co-financing “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom” and the upcoming films “Mortal Engines,” “Mamma Mia: Here We go Again!” and “BlacKkKlansman.”
Legendary Television recently received a second season order from Netflix for its “Lost in Space” series and is supporting an Emmy campaign for “Looming Tower.”