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[FILM] Chris Lee to Head "Legendary Pictures" (411 on Their Partners)

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  • madchinaman
    Chris Lee to Make Legendary Pictures http://hawaiifilmoffice.blogspot.com/2005/06/chris-lee-to-make- legendary-pictures.html The Hollywood Reporter and Variety
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 14 1:44 AM
      Chris Lee to Make Legendary Pictures
      http://hawaiifilmoffice.blogspot.com/2005/06/chris-lee-to-make-
      legendary-pictures.html


      The Hollywood Reporter and Variety reported today that Chris Lee
      will be president of Legendary Pictures, a new production company
      headed by venture capitalist Thomas Tull and backed by $500 million
      in private equity. The company just inked a 25-picture 50-50 co-
      financing and distribution deal with Warner Brothers. Legendary is
      expected to be based on the Warners' lot.

      -

      http://www.bizjournals.com/atlanta/stories/2001/06/04/daily4.html
      Tull is the founder and former chief of operations for Tax Services
      of America, which owns and operates more than 500 Jackson Hewitt
      locations nationwide. He also served executive stints with
      Pittsburgh-based Terrametrix, a software and systems solutions
      company, and with Triangle-based MTX.

      -


      Legendary's investors include a host of VC outfits like ABRY
      Partners, AIG Direct Investments, Banc of America Capital Investors,
      Columbia Capital, Falcon Investment Advisors, and M/C Venture
      Partners. In the face of a declining U.S. box office, Tull
      attributes the private equity infusion to the profit potential of
      ancillary and international markets: "I myself would not have done
      this deal six or seven years ago. But the advent of DVD and overseas
      expansion of the box office has made the movie business much more
      attractive as an asset class."

      Hawaii native son and former Columbia Pictures/TriStar production
      chief Lee has supervised such flicks as "Jerry
      Maguire," "Philadelphia," "As Good as It Gets," "My Best Friend's
      Wedding," "The Fisher King," "The Mask of Zorro," and "Apt Pupil."
      Lee returned to Hawaii to serve as Chairman of the University of
      Hawaii's Academy for Creative Media and is currently
      producing "Superman Returns" for Warners.


      ===========


      Capital Investors Announces Investment in Legendary Pictures, LLC
      June 13, 2005
      http://www.bacapitalinvestors.com/news/#20050613
      ttp://www.bacapitalinvestors.com/news/


      Capital Investors ("BACI") announced today the closing of a founding
      investment in Legendary Pictures, LLC ("Legendary"). Legendary was
      established to co-produce and co-finance a slate of 25 major motion
      pictures in partnership with Warner Brothers Pictures. Capital
      Investors and M/C Venture Partners co-led the equity investment and
      ABRY Partners led the mezzanine investment. Also participating were
      AIG Direct Investments, Columbia Capital, D.B. Zwirn, Falcon
      Investment Advisors and Lions Capital.


      =====


      Legendary Pictures Helps Foot the Superman Bills
      http://www.bluetights.net/news.php?id=125


      Variety is reporting that newly formed company Legendary Pictures is
      putting up half of the production budget for Superman Returns, just
      as they did for Batman Begins.

      Blasting onto the scene, recently formed Legendary Pictures is
      putting up no less than half the production budget for Warner Bros.
      Pictures' "Superman Returns" -- as well as having footed half the
      bill of "Batman Begins." Legendary, run by financier Thomas Tull and
      backed by private equity, also will be Warners' 50-50 co-financing
      and production partner on M. Night ShyamalanM. Night
      Shyamalan's "Lady in the Water" and animated family pic "The Ant
      Bully," both of which are set for release next summer, as
      is "Superman."

      By partnering on a big-ticket item like "Superman" and spreading the
      risk around, Warner Bros. Pictures can display fiscal
      responsibility. The high-profile film, directed by Bryan Singer, is
      still under way shooting in Australia for another few weeks, having
      begun lensing in the spring.


      ========


      Legendary soups up pic presence
      Quite an entrance for film company
      By PAMELA MCCLINTOCK
      http://www.variety.com/article/VR1117931953?
      categoryid=1236&cs=1&s=h&p=0


      Blasting onto the scene, recently formed Legendary Pictures is
      putting up no less than half the production budget for Warner Bros.
      Pictures' "Superman Returns" -- as well as having footed half the
      bill of "Batman Begins."
      Legendary, run by financier Thomas Tull and backed by private
      equity, also will be Warners' 50-50 co-financing and production
      partner on M. Night ShyamalanM. Night Shyamalan's "Lady in the
      Water" and animated family pic "The Ant Bully," both of which are
      set for release next summer, as is "Superman."

      PactPact between the film studio and Legendary comes at a critical
      time for the larger Warner Bros. Entertainment, which is looking to
      trim costs next year and institute possible layoffs in anticipation
      of a revenue slowdown, particularly on the DVD side. Other divisions
      of parent conglomconglom Time WarnerTime Warner also are completing
      aggressive budget reviews, including HBO.

      By partnering on a big-ticket item like "Superman" and spreading the
      risk around, Warner Bros. Pictures can display fiscal
      responsibility. The high-profile film, directed by Bryan SingerBryan
      Singer, is still under way shooting in Australia for another few
      weeks, having begun lensing in the spring.

      Sources on the production suggest that the film's budget is already
      north of the $208 million being spent on Universal's "King Kong,"
      although insiders say the price tag is actually around $175-180
      million, factoring in the substantial tax incentives offered in
      Australia.

      The Legendary deal also continues Warner Bros. Pictures' track
      record of aggressively going after co-financing partners, such as
      Village Roadshow.

      Linked to big pix

      For its part, Legendary and its non-Hollywood investors get
      immediate cache by attaching themselves to blockbusters and A-list
      directors. Legendary and Warners will split all revenue streams
      equally after the studio recoups costs. Warners will handle
      worldwide distribution.

      "One of the central pillars of our philosophy is to back the very
      best filmmakers, and to be part of projects that are part of our
      cultural fabric," Tull said.

      Tull said he didn't mind that Legendary wasn't able to have a
      producing credit on "Batman""Batman" when the film hit the theaters.
      Legendary does have a credit on the DVD, which was released earlier
      this month. Film has grossed more than $200 million at the domestic
      box office, and $370 million worldwide.

      When Warners and Tull announced their pact in late June, all they
      said was that Legendary planned to invest $500 million in 25 pics
      over the next five years, suggesting Legendary might attach itself
      to a series of smaller projects.

      Revelation that Legendary is co-producing such tentpole pics
      as "Superman" and "Batman" suggests that the frosh production and
      financing company is confident the pool of money will grow to be
      much more than $500 million as returns are reinvested, explaining
      why Legendary insists it still will have enough money to fund the
      full, 25-pic slate.

      Not a 'fund'

      Tull, who most recently ran media and entertainment holding company
      the Convex Group, said it's wrong for people to think of the $500
      million as a "fund." Rather, Legendary is an operating company. Tull
      continues to split his time between Atlanta and Hollywood, but
      intends to relocate to Los Angeles.

      Neither Warners nor Legendary would comment on specifics of their
      deal, citing strict non-disclosure rules.

      "The way we approach it is very simple," Tull said. "We each put up
      half the money. We each work to produce the film. After the studio
      recoups costs, our nickel sits next to their nickel, and we all
      revenue streams."

      Some studios, of course, have been accused in the past of
      using "Hollywood accounting" practices that allow them to keep a
      large part of the pie before allocating any money to its financing
      partners.

      'Financially sophisticated'

      "There are some different aspects to this deal that I can't talk
      about," Tull said. "The investor group we have includes some of the
      most financially sophisticated people around. If these folks came in
      and financed our company, it's because they were very comfortable
      that the deal allowed our interests and Warners' to be closely
      aligned."

      Another exec involved with the partnership said that the deal
      provides "a very fair allocation."

      Traditionally, studios minimize risk by giving financing partners
      overseas rights.

      Unlike other private equity fund deals, such as the $230 million
      fund at Paramount, Legendary is an active investor, meaning it
      considers itself a full producing partner, involved in all stages of
      the process, including budgeting, casting, greenlighting, marketing
      and merchandising.

      Legendary, with offices on the Warner lot, also plans to develop a
      number of film projects internally.

      Warners and Legendary have not yet said what their other co-
      productions will be, outside of the four just announced.

      "Legendary's enthusiasm for our filmmaking choices and their spirit
      of collaboration promise to be the cornerstone of a great
      relationship going forward," Warner Bros. Entertainment prexyprexy-
      chief operating officer Alan HornAlan Horn said.

      Investors in Tull's company include ABRY Partners, AIG Direct
      Investments, Banc of America Capital Investors, Columbia Capital,
      Falcon Investment Advisors and M/C Venture Partners. San Francisco-
      based investment banking firm Perseus acted as financial adviser to
      Legendary in the transaction with Warners.


      ==========


      UH film school founder to step aside
      By Michael Tsai
      http://the.honoluluadvertiser.com/article/2005/Jun/26/ln/ln09p.html


      University of Hawai'i Academy for Creative Media founder Chris Lee
      is stepping down from his position as chairman of the film school to
      help lead a new movie production company.

      In a phone interview from Sydney, Australia, where he is working as
      executive producer for the film "Superman Returns," Lee yesterday
      confirmed his new job as president of Legendary Pictures will force
      him to leave ACM.

      Lee said he has kept UH president David McClain apprised of his new
      job, but they have not discussed a ACM transition plan.

      Lee said his deal with Legendary lets him continue working with the
      film school "in some capacity."

      "Basically my job was to get the school up and running. I think it
      will be more important for me now to market the school and raise
      funds than oversee the day-to-day business."

      Legendary turned heads this week by entering into a blockbuster deal
      with Warner Bros. Pictures, which will invest up to $500 million in
      matching funds to co-finance 25 films over the next several
      years. "(Warner Bros.) matching us dollar for dollar means that this
      is actually a billion-dollar deal," Lee said.

      Legendary is headed by venture capitalist Thomas Tull, who most
      recently served as director and president of the Convex Group, a
      media and entertainment holding company.

      The rest of Legendary's core group of industry veterans includes
      chief financial officer and chief operating officer Larry Clark,
      chief marketing officer Scott Mednick, and president of physical
      production William Fay.

      Lee, first contacted about the job in January 2004, said his role as
      president will be to serve as a creative voice for the company.

      Lee, a graduate of Iolani School and Yale University, is the former
      president of production for TriStar Pictures and Colombia Pictures.
      His resume includes work on "Jerry Maguire," "Philadelphia," "As
      Good as It Gets," "The Mask of Zorro," "Stepmom" and many other
      films.

      Lee returned to Hawai'i in 2003 to head the Academy for Creative
      Media.

      In the program's first academic year, 70 students enrolled in
      classes ranging from film production to video game animation.
      Several student projects were featured at the Hawaii International
      Film Festival and other film festivals around the country. In a
      partnership with Scion Hawai'i, students from the program last
      semester wrote, directed and produced three TV commercials for the
      local market.

      This year, ACM will operate as its own degree-granting program. As
      many as 10 new local and Mainland faculty will be added to help
      teach the 22 courses offered next semester.

      "I set out to create this film school, and I wasn't sure what the
      journey would be like," Lee said. "I'm proud of what we've been able
      to do and I'm grateful for the support we've been given."

      While there is no timetable for finding Lee's replacement, UH
      professor and ACM associate chair Tom Brislin has assumed many of
      day-to-day administrative duties since Lee has been in Australia.


      ======


      Lady in the Water
      Warner Bros. Pictures / Legendary Pictures
      http://movies.warnerbros.com/pub/movie/ladyinthewater/ladyinthewater.
      html


      Sci-Fi/Fantasy. In Lady in the Water, a story originally conceived
      by writer-director M. Night Shyamalan for his children, a modest
      building manager named Cleveland Heep (Paul Giamatti) rescues a
      mysterious young woman (Bryce Dallas Howard) from danger and
      discovers she is actually a narf, a character from a bedtime story
      who is trying to make the treacherous journey from our world back to
      hers. Cleveland and his fellow tenants start to realize that they
      are also characters in this bedtime story. As Cleveland falls deeper
      and deeper in love with the woman, he works together with the
      tenants to protect his new fragile friend from the deadly creatures
      that reside in this fable and are determined to prevent her from
      returning home.

      Director: M. Night Shyamalan
      Producers: M. Night Shyamalan, Sam Mercer

      Cast: Paul Giamatti, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jeffrey Wright, Bob
      Balaban, Freddy Rodriguez, Sarita Choudhury, Jared Harris, Bill
      Irwin

      Release Date: July 21, 2006


      =========


      http://biz.yahoo.com/ic/130/130642.html
      The Convex Group owns more than 100 media patents and, through its
      LidRock division, holds the distribution rights to CDs, DVD, and CD-
      ROMS that fit into the lids of soft drink cups. The company also
      owns disposable DVD maker Flexplay Technologies and the Internet
      content providers HowStuffWorks and Stuffguide. The Convex Group was
      founded by CEO Jeff Arnold, the founder and former CEO of WebMD.


      ===


      Investment Partners
      http://www.seinteractive.com/Article.asp?id=27617


      Southeast Interactive believes that strong investment partners are
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      Allconnect
      Nth Power Technologies
      Maveron

      Arsenal Digital Solutions
      Southern Cross Capital

      BuildLinks
      IdeaEdge Ventures

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      Newlight Associates

      MediaSpan Group, Inc.
      Rustic Canyon Ventures

      Nitronex
      Vantage Point Venture Partners
      TPG Ventures

      Pixel Magic Imaging
      Dai Nippon Printing Co., Ltd.
      Altech ADS Co., Ltd.

      VisionAIR, Inc.
      Banc of America Capital Investors
      GE Capital

      Waveguide Solutions, Inc.
      Academy Funds
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