Aspart of ongoing business changes, MGM is severing some of itsties with Sony. MGM will no longer split itshome entertainment business between Sony Pictures Entertainment and 20th CenturyFox and will instead only work with Fox.
The move is especially notable because Sony led the consortium that acquired MGM in 2005.
It'snot a total split with Sony, however. The change won't impact Sony's distribution of theforthcoming James Bond film Casino Royale, which will hit theatres in November. Inaddition, MGM and Sony have extended their relationship over the Bond franchise withboth on board to co-produce and co-distribute the next Bond movie, as well as thenext Pink Panther project and othersto be determined. MGM and Sony, along withRevolution Studios, are also teaming up in a co-financing arrangement on Rocky Balboa, which will be released by MGM on December 22.
Inother MGM news, the company said it would re-establish its worldwide TVdistribution business as an in-house unit, again taking business away fromSony.
MGM's library includes more than 4000 films and 10,000 TV episodes.
"MGM's motion picturedistribution business is growing rapidly as we will release some 80 new featurefilms in North America over the next four years," MGM chairman and CEO HarrySloan said in a statement. "We are now ready to turn our attention to ourtelevision and home entertainment distribution businesses. In so doing, we haveidentified another important opportunity to build out our business by returningour worldwide television sales operations in-house and by consolidating ourhome entertainment releases with a single distributor."