'No Time To Die'

Source: Universal

‘No Time To Die’

MGM has brought on two investment banks as it explores a possible sale, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.

The studio has been linked with a sale for years and observers said talks could speed up in 2021, after the release of postponed James Bond saga No Time To Die.

Several years ago MGM held talks with Apple about a range of options, the WSJ said it has hired Morgan Stanley and LionTree.

Despite being a relative minnow in Hollywood with a reported $5.5bn market value and a lack of major corporate parentage to exploit its content, MGM owns something many buyers in Hollywood want.

It is behind the James Bond franchise, and owns a coveted library whose titles include the Terminator and Rocky franchises, as well as The Handmaid’s Tale.

Such IP is highly attractive to buyers looking to exploit content across streaming platforms, particularly in a year when the pandemic has devastated the US theatrical release model.

Kevin Ulrich, MGM board chairman and head of New York hedge fund Anchorage Capital, the studio’s largest shareholder, is reportedly in a difficult position as other MGM investors seek to sell their stake.

The studio has been without a CEO since Gary Barber left in March 2018 after seven years at the helm.

MGM declined to comment when reached by Screen.