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Millennium Entertainment Seeking a Buyer

The indie distributor has hired Salem Partners to help sell the company.

Millennium Entertainment CEO Bill Lee confirmed Monday that the distributor of independent films is for sale and that it has retained the services of Los Angeles-based financial-services firm Salem Partners to help with a sale.

Millennium boasts a library of 665 titles, including such recent films as The Paperboy with Nicole Kidman and Bernie with Jack Black. Founded three years ago, the company also has relationships with theatrical exhibitors AMC, Regal and Landmark and delivers films to Netflix, Wal-Mart and other home-entertainment giants.

The company said it "enjoyed a record year in both revenue and earnings in 2012," in part because of the success of Bernie, a critically acclaimed small-budget film that earned $9.2 million domestically.

The announcement underscores the volatility of the indie distribution business.

Millennium Entertainment is 60 percent owned by Avi Lerner's production company Nu Image, 20 percent owned by Prentice Capital and 20 percent by Exclusive Media Group. Lerner's production company Millennium Films is separate from Millennium Entertainment.

Millennium didn't immediately respond to a request for comment, but Lee reportedly is expecting that it will fetch up to $75 million. The company said in a release Monday that "Millennium Entertainment's management team intends to remain intact and will continue to operate and support new ownership in the event of a sale."

Upcoming titles Millennium is distributing include director Ariel Vromen's The Iceman, starring Winona Ryder and Chris Evans; What Maisie Knew, starring Julianne Moore and Alexander Skarsgard; and Stuck in Love, with Jennifer Connelly and Greg Kinnear.