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Annapurna Resolves More Than $200 Million in Debt, Pushes Ahead Without Banks (EXCLUSIVE)

After weeks of hardball between top financial institutions and Larry Ellison, Oracle billionaire and father of Annapurna CEO Megan Ellison, Annapurna Pictures has resolved more than $200 million in debt, insiders close to the matter told Variety.

Participants in the studio’s revolving credit facility will receive roughly $0.82 on the dollar to cure more than $200 million in debt, sources added. The deal was closed in the past few days,  one individual noted, and official word is expected this week from the indie studio. The line of credit, set in 2017, was mostly used as a P&A fund to promote starry bombs like “Vice,” “The Sisters Brothers” and “Destroyer,” insiders noted.

Annapurna will not seek a new line of credit, and will instead look for financing partners on a case-by-case basis, or be wholly financed by Ellison herself.  An Annapurna spokesperson did not respond to Variety‘s request for comment.

In early August, reports said the fledgling studio was flirting with Chapter 11 bankruptcy thanks to the sizable debt, Ellison herself issued a memo at the time of the reports, dismissing the claims as conjecture and reaffirming her commitment to her company and the stories it tells.

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Variety reported extensively in March about a string of films whose performances resulted in a roughly $35 million material loss including the kind of provocative dramas the 8-year-old shop has become known for —including the aforementioned three titles (“The Sisters Brothers” cost $40 million and made $3 million at the domestic box office), as well as the Barry Jenkins awards player “If Beale Street Could Talk.”

“Restructuring deals with financial institutions is not uncommon, yet the process is usually handled without a spotlight on it. Fortunately/unfortunately, people like to write about me and my family,” Ellison wrote in her August staff memo. “That said, it is of tremendous importance to me that you all know we are as committed as ever to this company and are in full support of our future.”

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