Global Road Shake-Up: Banks Take Control of Film Studio

Donald Tang, Rob Friedman Split - H - Getty
Credit: Getty

Staff at the mini-Hollywood studio were told Tuesday of the drastic move.

Global Road's financially strapped mini-film studio is now in the control of lenders.

Staff at the company were told of the dire development on Tuesday, just as the film division prepares to release the family adventure A.X.L. on Friday. They were not told the name of the banks, however.

Last week, The Hollywood Reporter first reported that Global Road Tang Media Partners, founded by Donald Tang, has been unable to raise the funds needed to keep Global Road's film distribution and production operation flush beyond the end of the year. Global Road, which is less than a year old, is run by veteran Hollywood studio chief Rob Friedman.

Lenders have several options when assuming control of an asset. They can decide to either sell, extend more credit to Global Road or opt to declare Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

So far, there have been no layoffs.

Following Tuesday's all-hands meeting, sources told THR that Global Road's television and international sales divisions are in better standing since they have generated revenue. To date, the mini-studio has yet to score a box-office win.

Tang began his foray into Hollywood in earnest in mid-2016 upon buying IM Global and simultaneously launching a TV production fund with the company's recently hatched IM Global Television unit.

A year ago this month, Tang closed a deal to buy North American distributor Open Road Films and hired veteran Hollywood studio chief Friedman to run the combined companies. In October, the indie studio was rebranded Global Road Entertainment.

Screen Daily first reported that lenders have taken control.

Global Road declined comment.