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Lionsgate nears minority stake in 42

Mar 21, 2022
Illustration of a glimmering Hollywood start caught on a fishing hook.

Illustration: Gabriella Turrisi/Axios

Lionsgate is in advanced talks for a minority stake in London-based management and talent company 42, Axios confirmed. News of the deal was first reported by Deadline.

Why it matters: This will give Lionsgate more access to international talent and projects at a time when everyone is looking for the next "Squid Game."

  • 42's client roster includes "Succession" creator Jesse Armstrong, "Downton Abbey" creator Julian Fellowes and actors Michael Caine, Sofia Boutella and Nicholas Hoult.
  • On the production side, 42 is behind films "The Courier," "Outside the Wire" and "Night Teeth" and upcoming projects like the Netflix movie "End of the Road" and the Paramount+ series "Flatshare."

Details: Lionsgate and 42 will partner with 3 Arts Entertainment on a three-way TV venture.

  • 42 will sign a first-look TV deal with Lionsgate. It has a film deal with Netflix.
  • A Lionsgate spokesperson declined to comment, but the deal price is said to be in the eight-figure range.
  • Lionsgate bought 3 Arts Entertainment in 2018 in a deal that valued it at $300 million.

Catch up quick: Lionsgate recently made an unsuccessful attempt to acquire independent studio STX.

  • At the same time, Lionsgate is deciding whether to spin off cable network Starz or sell it outright. Lionsgate itself has been seen as an M&A target.

The bottom line: This is not going to make those who believe Lionsgate is fattening itself up to look more attractive to a potential buyer feel any differently.

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