Lionsgate Film Execs Erik Feig, Patrick Wachsberger Plan Exit

Veteran Lionsgate executives Erik Feig and Patrick Wachsberger are planning their departures from the company, according to sources.

Neither exit is imminent, but both are expected to take place within the next year. Lionsgate had no comment.

Motion Picture Group co-president Feig has been raising money recently to launch a new company focused on youth-oriented projects. It’s also expected that Lionsgate will invest in the new entity.

Wachsberger, the current Motion Picture Group co-chairman, is believed to have been planning to leave Lionsgate for some time and is currently on a one-year extension. The longtime international sales specialist, a native of Belgium, joined Lionsgate in 2012 when the company bought Summit Entertainment for $412 million.

Feig was widely credited with helping make the four “Hunger Games” films a worldwide sensation, with nearly $3 billion in total box office grosses. His recent successes include moderately-priced projects “La La Land,” which made $446 million worldwide, and “Wonder,” which reeled in $270 million worldwide.

The departures come in the wake of Joe Drake becoming Motion Picture Group co-chairman in October. Drake had previously served as Lionsgate chief operating officer and Motion Pictures Group president before co-founding Good Universe in 2012. Drake’s arrival appears to have created something of a logjam among the top film executives at the company.

Lionsgate just reported earnings that were above Wall Street forecasts with $193 million, or 87 cents a share, for its third quarter ending on Dec. 31, compared with a $30.6 million loss in the same quarter last year. The studio cited strong performances from its motion picture segment and its Starz premium cable network, along with a tax break. It easily beat analyst forecasts of Lionsgate earning 25 cents a share during the latest quarter.

Revenues gained 52% to $1.14 billion — again far above the Wall Street consensus of $1.08 billion.

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