Lionsgate Extends CEO Jon Feltheimer's Contract Through May 2018

Lionsgate Reunites With Founder For TV Venture

Lionsgate and Thunderbird will jointly manage the venture, designed to share production and distribution costs on all scripted projects picked up to series. "Doing a deal like this enables us to stretch and diversify," says Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer (pictured).

The mini-studio boss renews his long-term agreement after last year's acquisition of Summit Entertainment and success with "The Hunger Games" and "Twilight" movie franchises.

Lionsgate topper Jon Feltheimer has renewed his long-term agreement with the mini-studio through May 2018.

Terms of the deal disclosed in an SEC filing Monday include Feltheimer to receive a base salary of $1.5 million and to be eligible for a yearly performance bonus targeted at another $1.5 million.

The new contract comes after Feltheimer’s 13-year stint as CEO has brought Lionsgate box office success with its The Hunger Games and Twilight franchises, driving long-term profitability after last year’s Summit Entertainment acquisition.

PHOTOS: 'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire' Cast Heats Up Cannes

“We are pleased to make this early decision to extend Jon’s tenure as CEO until 2018, providing Lionsgate with extraordinary continuity as he and [vice chairman] Michael Burns continue to grow the company into a next generation global content leader,” said Lionsgate chairman of the board Mark Rachesky in a statement Monday.

The contract renewal also follows a steep run-up in the Lionsgate share price over the last year on the company's movie pipeline strength and expanding TV business.

Besides the upcoming release of The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, Lionsgate could extend the Twilight franchise and potentially create new young-adult franchises with its upcoming Ender’s Game and Divergent releases.

Lionsgate also set a company record at Cannes, bringing in $250 million in movie sales from its lineup, which included Mockingjay Part One and Mockingjay Part Two, the third and fourth installments of The Hunger Games.

PHOTOS: Cannes: 'Hunger Games' Cast Attends 'Jimmy P.' Premiere

On the TV side, Lionsgate is clicking with Anger Management and Nashville, and is squeezing revenue for its Mad Men series from Netflix.

Feltheimer and vice chairman Burns should also feel vindicated after seeing off corporate raider Carl Icahn, who earlier besieged Lionsgate with a series of hostile takeover bids and a failed proxy fight.

The mini-studio’s market capitalization has jumped from $80 million to nearly $4 billion during Feltheimer’s stint as CEO.

Besides Feltheimer, vice chairman Burns, co-COOs Steve Beeks and Brian Goldsmith, and general counsel and chief strategic officer Wayne Levin have all signed new long-term agreements in the last year.