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Hammer Films, the historic British label behind some of cinema’s most iconic horror titles — including The Curse of Frankenstein (1957), Dracula (1958) and The Mummy (1959) — has signed a major licensing deal with StudioCanal.
The arrangement will see the Vivendi-owned mini-major handle international sales and marketing of the 200-film strong Hammer library and distribute in its own territories of the U.K., France, Germany, Australia and New Zealand. StudioCanal will also develop merchandising and licensing opportunities with the Hammer brand.
“We’re delighted to partner with Hammer Films and add to our extensive catalog of classic films,” said John Rodden, head of U.K. home entertainment & library at StudioCanal, which already has a long-standing relationship with Hammer, having collaborated on many restorations and releases. “The Hammer name is truly iconic and we look forward to developing the brand on a global basis.”
First established in 1934, Hammer Films would go on to make international stars of Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee, while also given early roles to Oliver Reed, Raquel Welch, Joanna Lumley and Pierce Brosnan. In 2007 it was revitalized by current CEO Simon Oakes, and would have a box office smash in 2012 with the The Woman in Black, starring Daniel Radcliffe. Its latest film, The Lodge — starring Riley Keough, Jaeden Martell, Richard Armitage and Alicia Silverstone — bowed in Sundance and is due for release next year.
“The StudioCanal library already includes many films that Hammer co-produced with its British distributors in the 1960s and 70s,” said Oakes, who negotiated the deal with Rodden. “This partnership is both an exciting opportunity for our two companies and a new chapter in a long filmmaking tradition.”
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