Top Gun Maverick

Source: Scott Garfield / Paramount Pictures

‘Top Gun: Maverick’

Reports were circling in Hollywood on Tuesday evening that Paramount Global parent National Amusements might be about to open an exclusive negotiating window with Skydance Media.

The development comes two months after David Ellison’s Skydance reportedly made an offer to buy National Amusements.

It was unclear whether Shari Redstone, the controlling shareholder of National Amusements, and Ellison were on course to reach an agreement after a competing $11bn offer from private equity firm Apollo Global Management to acquire the film and television studio Paramount Pictures came in last month.

According to The New York Times, one scenario could see Ellison buy National Amusements and merge with Paramount – the jewel in the crown because of its storied film and television studio.

Skydance and Paramount have partnered on tentpoles for many years, most recently Top Gun: Maverick and the Mission: Impossible franchise.

Last week ratings agency S&P Global downgraded Paramount Global’s debt to junk status due to the decline of the company’s pay-TV business.

National Amusements and Paramount Global had not commented to press at time of writing. Paramount Global shares reached $11.76 at market close and climbed marginally after hours.