We’ve been following the plight of the Terminator rights since it was announced they would be going to auction last November. According to Deadline Hollywood the rights were sold today during a bidding war that lasted 5 hours. Both Sony (who distributed Terminator Salvation) and Lionsgate were interested in the rights, with the latter hoping to make “a complete re-boot, back to basics, with real emotional stories, and effects that will be secondary.”
Unfortunately for both studios they were outbid…by an investment advisor.
Halcyon Holding Corp accepted the $29.5 million bid from, of all parties, the debtholder which pushed it into bankruptcy, Santa Barbara-based hedge fund Pacificor. (This is the same Pacificor whom Halcyon accused in a lawsuit of extortion, bribery, and fraud and demanded $30M in damages.)
Tonight, Sony and Lionsgate dropped out at just under $29.5 million when it became clear that Pacificor “was willing to pay almost any amount of money for Terminator,” an insider tells me. Halcyon will receive $5 million for every Terminator movie made from now on, as well as retains the rich revenue streams from the movies Terminator 3 and 4.
Ideally James Cameron would have turned up to the auction by private jet, outbid everyone for the franchise he created, and put the rights in a safe for 10 years so nobody could expolit them. Alas, some company looking to make a quick buck will be in charge of the franchise, so we can expect either a reboot or Terminator 5 over the next few years.
Update: According to the L.A Times Sony and Lionsgate are jointly in talks with Pacificor to “take control of the property”. Pacificor has no experience making movies whatsoever, so they will need to work with studios if they are to put the rights into good use.