Weinstein Co $289 Million Sale to Lantern Closes

Film company’s library features more than 270 films and high-profile scripted and unscripted TV Series

Last Updated: July 16, 2018 @ 11:02 AM

Lantern Entertainment, a new division of the private equity firm that bought The Weinstein Co. and its assets for $289 million, said on Monday it’s finalized the sale.

The company, in introducing itself to the industry, said Lantern’s mission is “to be one of the preeminent homes for creative talent with an unwavering commitment to compelling content creation and a culture of diverse professionals who will operate this company with the absolute highest level of ethics and standards.”

Lantern bought TWC out of bankruptcy following the studio’s plunge into turmoil in the aftermath of revelations of former head Harvey Weinstein’s 30 years of alleged sexual harassment, assault and rape.

Lantern co-presidents Andy Mitchell and Milos Brajovic are now focused on turning the company’s assets around under a new banner.

“Over the last several months, we have immersed ourselves in the formation of Lantern Entertainment,” Mitchell and Brajovic said in a statement. “Throughout all our conversations with employees, creatives and industry professionals, we are inspired by the collective commitment and support extended to the launch of our new company, which is anchored by creativity in a meritocracy-based culture. Across all disciplines, we are extremely motivated to become a forward-thinking force in this industry.

“We thank our employees and look forward to collaborating with them as we set out to produce the most compelling content for audiences worldwide, across all media platforms,” Mitchell and Brajovic continued. “Today, we turn the page to begin anew. We are grateful.”

Last week, in anticipation of the sale closing and the studio handing over the keys to Lantern, the TWC board of directors stepped down — all except for Ivona Smith, a restructuring veteran selected to help shepherd the company through bankruptcy.

The company also let go of the remaining 70 or so employees who were still at TWC. Lantern, however, offered contracts to roughly two-thirds of the former employees, amounting to roughly 20 TWC workers being laid off.

In order to help Lantern during the transition, Mitchell and Brajovic tapped industry veterans Steve Beeks, Alexa Platt and Lauren Zalaznick to consult for the company as it looks to revive the film studio.

Mitchell and Brajovic said in a statement at the time that in their roles as advisors, they will “help position the new company for a creative and strategic future in the development, production and delivery of quality content across all platforms.”

In closing the deal, Lantern’s film library now consists of more than 270 films, having won 28 Academy Awards and generated an aggregate worldwide box office of more than $2 billion. The company also gains a television business with hits such as “Project Runway.”

Among the film titles Lantern acquired are “The King’s Speech,” “The Artist,” “Inglourious Basterds,” “Silver Linings Playbook,” “The Hateful Eight,” “Django Unchained” and “Children of the Corn.”

The unreleased films include “The Upside,” starring Kevin Hart, Bryan Cranston and Nicole Kidman and “The Current War” with Benedict Cumberbatch and Michael Shannon.