Films covered are Boaz Yakin’s Safe, Pete Travis’ Dredd and Simon West’s Protection.

Lionsgate has signed a three-picture US distribution deal with IM Global, for Boaz Yakin’s Safe, Pete Travis’ Dredd and Simon West’s Protection.

The deal was announced today by Joe Drake, Lionsgate Co-Chief Operating Officer and Motion Picture Group President, and Stuart Ford, IM Global founder and CEO.

“We have long admired the forward-thinking approach of IM Global and are thrilled to be partnering with them and Reliance. Safe, Dredd and Protection are genre films at their best, with charismatic stars, compelling stories and intense action,” said Jason Constantine, Lionsgate President of Acquisitions and Co-Productions. 

Ford added: “Lionsgate is the perfect distributor for the kind of action driven films we’re currently focusing our production and financing energies on. As they proved with The Expendables recently, nobody reaches this target audience better, and we’re looking forward to working alongside Joe Drake and his team on all three campaigns.”

Safe, currently in production, is a $30m action thriller starring Jason Statham. Lawrence Bender Productions and Trigger Street Productions are producing; IM Global finances.

Dredd starts shooting Nov 12 in Cape Town. The 3D adaptation of the cult comic will star Karl Urban. DNA Films produces alongside writer Alex Garland.

Protection is set to shoot in New Mexico starting in March 2011, to star Dwayne Johnson. Robert Lawrence, Gordon Gray and IM Global’s Ford will produce.

Brian Kavanaugh Jones of Automatik, IM Global’s production joint venture with Alliance Pictures, is an executive producer on Safe and will also work on Protection. Alliance has multi-territory rights on all three films.

The deal was negotiated for Lionsgate by Constantine, Eda Kowan, Lionsgate Senior Vice President of Acquisitions and Co-Productions, and Wendy Jaffe, Executive Vice President Business & Legal Affairs, Acquisitions and Co-Productions; and by Ford and Senior Vice President of Business Affairs, Kendra Dousette on behalf of IM Global.