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Why Lionsgate Needs ‘Hellboy,’ ‘John Wick 3’ and a Charlize

Liongate’s hopes for 2019 relaxation largely on shoulders of “Hellboy,” John Wick and the 2 unlikely lovers of “Long Shot.”

Last yr was the studio’s worst yr on the field workplace since 2011. It pulled in simply $389 million in 2018, in accordance with Box Office Mojo.

But Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer instructed buyers in February that three upcoming movies — “Hellboy,” “Long Shot” and “John Wick: Chapter 3 — Parabellum,” shall be a “return to form” for the corporate’s movement image enterprise. Last yr’s disappointments included “Robin Hood,” which pulled in $30.eight million domestically, “The Spy Who Dumped Me” ($33.6 million) and “The Commuter” ($36.Three million).

“John Wick 3” comes out subsequent month and is the primary movie greenlit by new movement image group co-chairman Joe Drake. The franchise has a religious fan base: the second movie within the sequence earned $171.5 million in worldwide field workplace, up from the primary movie’s $88.eight million.

But earlier than “John Wick 3” hits theaters, the studio will launch “Hellboy” on April 12 and the Charlize Theron-Seth Rogen rom-com “Long Shot” on May 3.

Lionsgate chief monetary officer Jimmy Barge instructed buyers in February that the studio’s plan was for fiscal 2019 to be a yr of funding and repositioning of the motion-picture group. Lionsgate’s fiscal yr — used for accounting functions — ends in March and begins up once more in April.

“Hellboy,” rebooted with “Stranger Things” star David Harbour, shall be a check of whether or not Lionsgate can once more engender a profitable franchise. The two earlier “Hellboy” movies, launched by Sony and Universal, grossed a mixed $259.7 million worldwide.

Kahane and Drake, who’ve had a protracted relationship with Rogen, offered “Long Shot” to Lionsgate whereas they had been at Good Universe. They additionally produced the romantic comedy, a style that has discovered renewed success, thanks largely to Netflix’s “Set It Up” and “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before.”

Last yr’s total box-office gross for Lionsgate was down 56 p.c in comparison with 2017’s $885 million, and it was the studio’s lowest gross because it pulled in $184 million in 2011 — the yr earlier than “The Hunger Games” franchise modified its fortunes.

As a part of Lionsgate’s makes an attempt to reposition the movie enterprise for achievement, the studio introduced a restructuring within the studio’s enterprise operations in January that resulted in roughly 25 folks shedding their jobs.

The majority of the the modifications had been the results of Lionsgate consolidating its advertising and distribution beneath one roof. The studio employed former Sony exec Damon Wolf as the brand new head of worldwide advertising in June 2018.

Lionsgate additionally ended its partnership with Codeblack, as a part of a studio restructuring that Drake mentioned on the time, in an inner memo, would hopefully “better align our company with our industry’s evolving landscape and therefore the needs of the audience and our customers.”

In the final yr, Lionsgate has introduced in Nathan Kahane to function president of the motion-picture division, reuniting the previous Good Universe government together with his co-founder Drake, who joined the studio when Lionsgate acquired Good Universe in October.

The studio re-upped distribution head David Spitz final October, and most just lately tapped Jen Hollingsworth as chief working officer of the motion-picture group.

Feltheimer mentioned these have all been steps to simplify the enterprise and put money into the studio’s content material quite than pointless prices.

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