Annapura Pictures Locks 'Terminator' Package (Cannes)

9:05 AM PST 05/13/2011 by Gregg Kilday
Richard Foreman Jr./Warner Bros./Courtesy Everett Collection

Producer Megan Ellison is expected to strike up further deals for the project, which marks the return of Arnold Schwarzenegger to the franchise, when she hits the Croisette.

CANNES -- Producer Megan Ellison has beat out Lionsgate in a bid to buy the Terminator package that will mark Arnold Schwarzenegger’s return to the robotic franchise.

CAA, which is repping the package that includes Fast Five director Justin Lin, producer Robert Cort and rights to make two movies, kicked off the auction two weeks ago and closed it Thursday night in Cannes.

Ellison, who heads Annapura Pictures, was heading to Cannes Friday. Details of the winning bid were not immediately available, but distributors are now expected to circle Annupura to lock up a further deal.

Megan Ellison, along with her brother David Ellison (who heads his own company, Skydance Prods.) was a producer on True Grit. She’s currently juggling a number of other hot properties, including Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal’s untitled search-for-Bin-Laden movie; John Hillcoat’s Depression-era drama The Wettest County in the World; and an untitled Paul Thomas Anderson drama, starring Philip Seymour Hoffman.

Schwarzenegger didn’t appear in the last Terminator movie, Terminator Salvation, which Warners released domestically and Sony handled worldwide in 2009. The following year, the movie's rights holder the Halcyon Group went through bankruptcy in 2010, and Pacificor, the Santa Barbara-based hedge fund, won the rights to the property for $29.5 million plus a promise to pay previous rights-holder Halcyon $5 million for each sequel that is produced.

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