Lionsgate has new Oz, N.Z. distributors

Hoyts for theaters, Sony for DVD and catalog

SYDNEY -- Lionsgate said Wednesday that it has signed distribution deals for Australia and New Zealand with Hoyts Distribution for theatrical releases and with Sony Pictures Home Entertainment for DVD.

In addition, Lionsgate signed a pay TV supply deal with the Movie Network for Lionsgate films and TV series to appear on Movie Network's pay TV channels.

The new deals include current and Lionsgate titles such as "3:10 to Yuma" and "In the Valley of Elah" and will see Sony also distribute the back catalog, which includes classics such as "The Princess Bride."

The new deals come nearly a year after Lionsgate opened its Australian office.

President and co-COO Steve Beeks said Lionsgate's "distribution of current releases and library product in key English-speaking territories is an important component of our strategy for growing our margins and expanding our reach."