1. Spyglass signs letter of intent to run MGM

    By Kevin Wells on 2010-09-09

    Back in early August we reported that Spyglass Entertainment’s co-heads Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum were close to a deal to run MGM studios. A deal has apparently been struck now as Barber and Birnbaum have both signed a nonbinding letter of intent to take over management of the studio. To finalize the deal MGM’s debt holders and board of directors will have to approve it. Looking ahead it’s been reported that the co-heads of Spyglass have already had talks with Hollywood executive Ken Schapiro about becoming MGM’s chief operating officier.

    Once the deal is approved MGM will enter into a prepackaged bankruptcy sometime around the 15th of September when their latest debt waiver expires. This process should last approximately two months. Under the deal reported in August MGM’s creditors will forgive the studio’s $4 billion debt in exchange for the bulk of the restructured studio’s new equity.

    It is still unknown how soon any deal will effect the James Bond franchise. There has been numerous amounts of speculation as to whether MGM will continue to distribute films including future James Bond films. According to Deadline the franchise is hotly contested with Warner Bros, Sony Pictures Entertainment and 20th Century Fox all in the running as well as Paramount Pictures which is said to be making an “aggressive push” to capture Bond.

    Assuming financing becomes available Bond 23 could be back on track and start shooting in time for a 2012 release. Director Sam Mendes is currently prepping a screen adaptation of Ian McEwan’s novel On Chesil Beach while Daniel Craig was recently signed to star in the anticipated adaptation of Stieg Larsson’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, which will begin filming later this year. Craig is currently shooting Cowboys & Aliens, for which he has an option for a sequel.

    Keep watching for all the latest Bond 23 developments.

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