Relativity completes acquisition of Rogue

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Relativity Media has closed its deal to buy Rogue Pictures from Universal.

The finalizing of the months-in-the-works deal sees Relativity, run by CEO Ryan Kavanaugh, purchase Rogue's library of more than 25 titles, four upcoming films and more than 30 projects in development. It also acquires the unit's producing deals, including those with Wes Craven's Midnight Entertainment and Intrepid Pictures, and gets a distributor for its pipeline, with Universal handling Rogue releases in most of the world.

Rogue launched in 2004 as a division of Universal's Focus Features. In 2007, it became an independent specialty unit of the parent studio.

Details of the deal, terms of which were not disclosed but are believed to be in the $150 million range, initially were disclosed in October.

The first picture set for release under the deal is "The Unborn," written and directed by David S. Goyer and produced by Michael Bay's Platinum Dunes shingle. The supernatural horror movie opens Friday. (Platinum Dunes, which had a pact with Rogue, elected not to take part in the new deal.)

Relativity plans to release Rogue's three other upcoming pics, including Craven's "25/8," all of which are in postproduction. It will release a minimum of two films a year thereafter, and those could be any project under Rogue's development umbrella or any new project acquired. Certain existing Relativity projects also might be released by Universal.

Relativity president of production Tucker Tooley and his team will oversee future productions. Since news of the deal initially broke in October, Rogue's former co-president of production Andrew Rona has moved to Silver Pictures, where he is president of that Warner Bros.-based outfit.

The Rogue deal solidifies an already strong Universal- Relativity partnership. In the fall, the companies inked an equity deal by which Relativity will fund a substantial part of Universal's slate until 2015. (partialdiff)
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