SANTA MONICA, Calif., April 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- LIONSGATE® (NYSE: LGF), a leading global entertainment company, today announced that it has acquired U.S. distribution rights to Barry Levinson's found footage eco-horror film THE BAY from Alliance Films. The announcement was made jointly by Joe Drake, President of the Motion Picture Group, and Jason Constantine, President of Acquisitions and Co-Productions.
From the producers of the PARANORMAL ACTIVITY franchise, the film is the next installment in their series following INSIDIOUS, and chronicles an unprecedented biological disaster unleashed from the waters of the Chesapeake Bay- an isopod parasite, carrying a horrific untreatable disease, that jumps from fish to human hosts. The true horror and scope of the event unfolds on footage captured on home videos and the internet by the town's victims.
"Ingenious genre films are and always will be a specialty at Lionsgate," explained Drake of the choice to acquire the film. "THE BAY is a shining example of the kind of truly fresh horror film that audiences are always ready for, and that we excel at eventizing with them. Thanks to Barry, we'll all be afraid to go in the water for years to come."
Adds Constantine, "We have been big admirers of Jason Blum, Steven Schneider and Oren Peli since their breakout hit PARANORMAL ACTIVITY, and are thrilled to be in business with them. This film works so effectively because it establishes a very natural, everyday world, places the audience intimately within it, and then sits back as everything takes a horrific turn. Barry has incorporated found footage to the most satisfying possible effect, and it's all the scarier for not relying on anything supernatural."
"It's exciting to see a company like Lionsgate embrace THE BAY so enthusiastically. The found footage / multiplatform approach opened up the film to creative possibilities I hadn't encountered in my previous films, and I think these sorts of films will only continue to push boundaries as the technology changes," said director Barry Levinson.
The film was directed by Levinson, from a script he co-wrote with Michael Wallach. THE BAY was produced by Levinson, Jason Blum, Steven Schneider, and Oren Peli, and co-produced by Mythodic Films, with Brian Kavanaugh-Jones, Jason Sosnoff, Colin Strause, and Greg Strause executive producing.
THE BAY is an Alliance presentation in association with IM Global. IM Global handled foreign sales, and Alliance will distribute in Canada, the UK and Spain.
The deal was negotiated by Lionsgate's Constantine, with Eda Kowan, Senior Vice President of Acquisitions, and Wendy Jaffe, Executive Vice President Business & Legal Affairs for Acquisitions. The sale was brokered on behalf of Alliance by ICM and CAA. ICM packaged the film and represents Levinson and Wallach.
Lionsgate is a leading global entertainment company with a strong and diversified presence in motion picture production and distribution, television programming and syndication, home entertainment, family entertainment, digital distribution and new channel platforms. The Company has built a strong television presence in production of prime time cable and broadcast network series, distribution and syndication of programming through Debmar-Mercury and an array of channel assets. Lionsgate currently has 15 shows on more than 10 networks spanning its prime time production, distribution and syndication businesses, including such critically-acclaimed hits as "Mad Men", "Weeds" and "Nurse Jackie" along with recent series such as "Blue Mountain State" and the syndication successes "Tyler Perry's House Of Payne", its spinoff "Meet The Browns", "The Wendy Williams Show" and "Are We There Yet?".
Its feature film business has generated more than half a billion dollars at the North American box office in the past year, fueled most recently by the success of THE LINCOLN LAWYER, and by such hits as THE EXPENDABLES, which was #1 at the North American box office for two weeks, THE LAST EXORCISM, TYLER PERRY'S WHY DID I GET MARRIED TOO?, KICK ASS and the critically-acclaimed PRECIOUS, which won two Academy Awards®. The Company's home entertainment business has grown to more than 7% market share and is an industry leader in box office-to-DVD revenue conversion rate. Lionsgate handles a prestigious and prolific library of approximately 13,000 motion picture and television titles that is an important source of recurring revenue and serves as the foundation for the growth of the Company's core businesses. The Lionsgate brand remains synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the world.
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