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Paramount to Expand Film Slate to 15 Films in 2016

The studio is releasing 13 titles this year

Paramount Pictures is planning on pumping out 15 films in 2016, Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman said during a Q3 earnings call on Thursday.

“With the success of our first Paramount Animation feature, our unparalleled marketing capability and increased production across genres, the studio is stepping up its output and will be back up to its annual target of 15 films in 2016,” Dauman said.

The decision comes after the studio behind “Mission: Impossible — Rogue Nation” previously cutting back its slate, with just 13 titles planned for 2015.

“After a tough year, we believe Paramount is positioned to grow strongly next year and the years to come, fueled both by a reinvigorated film business and our new high-growth TV production business,” Dauman said.

The strong debut of “Rogue Nation” last weekend provided a much-needed shot in the arm for the studio, which ranks fifth in terms of box-office market share in 2015. Paramount has released just five films, so far, well behind rivals like Warner Bros.’ 16 releases, Universal’s 11, and Disney’s eight, which matched Fox’s output.

The fifth installment of the Tom Cruise action franchise looks strong, and “The SpongeBob Movie” over-achieved. But the pricey sequel “Terminator Genysis” and the low-budget “Project Almanac” underwhelmed, while “Hot Tub Time Machine 2” tanked.

Viacom released its third quarter 2015 financials earlier on Thursday before the U.S. stock markets opened. The company matched earnings expectations, but fell below revenue projections as TV ratings dipped and no major movie releases helped its cause.

The revenue performance was down 11 percent year-over-year in large part due to a poor performance from its film arm, which had no wide theatrical releases in the quarter.

“Underpinning this, we are operating more efficiently than ever, accelerating content development and delivering programming more quickly to audiences on all screens. We maintain a strong balance sheet, giving us significant financial flexibility and we remain committed to resuming Viacom’s share repurchase program in October,” Dauman said.