Paramount, Highlight Sign Five-Year Distribution Deal

'Zoolander 2'

The new deal kicks off in 2016 and will include titles such as 'Zoolander 2' and 'Paranormal Activity: Ghost Dimension.'

Swiss producer/distributor Highlight Communications has extended its distribution deal with Paramount Pictures.

Highlight on Wednesday unveiled a new five-year deal that will see it handle home entertainment distribution for Paramount titles Austria and Switzerland through its Rainbow Home Entertainment subsidiary. Highlight and its German subsidiary Constantin Film will continue to contract with Paramount for their portfolio of titles in Germany.

The new agreement takes effect in January next year and includes highlights such as Paranormal Activity: Ghost Dimension, Zoolander 2 and Joel Edgerton's The Gift.

Highlight also announced its half-year figures, which showed a sharp drop in revenues and profits. With no big international titles from German subsidiary Constantin Film, revenue in Highlight's film division were down 45.9 percent and overall revenue slipped 41.4 percent to $130.1 million (CHF 126.7 million). Half-year profits slumped nearly 90 percent to just $616,410 (CHF 600,000).

Highlight is counting on Constantin's two big German titles — comedy sequel Suck Me Shakespeer 2 and best-seller adaptation Look Who's Back — to revive the company's fortunes. For the full year, Highlight is forecasting revenues of between $318 million to $339 million (CHF 310 to 330 million) and profits of $14.4 million to $16.4 million (CHF 14 million to 16 million). 

Aug. 12, 2015, 12:54 p.m. An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Highlight/Constantin would distribute Paramount home entertainment titles in Germany. The Hollywood Reporter regrets the error. 

Twitter: @sroxborough

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