Lionsgate Posts Earnings of $79.6 Million

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Following on the success of films such as "The Help" and "The Hunger Games," states from Mississippi to North Carolina are in Hollywood to make sure they maximize awareness of programs designed to bring shoots home.

The studio benefits from strong theatrical and home entertainment business from its "Hunger Games" franchise.

TORONTO - Lionsgate on Thursday swung to a second quarter profit on sharply higher revenue from strong theatrical and home entertainment business from its Hunger Games franchise. 

The mini-studio posted earnings of $79.6 million, against a year-earlier loss of $25.3 million, on revenue up sharply to $707 million.

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The Q2 driver was the home entertainment release of The Hunger Games, which included DVD, on demand and digital revenue.

Lionsgate also racked up domestic theatrical box office revenue from titles like The Possession, The Expendables 2, Step Up Revolution and Madea’s Witness Protection.

Lionsgate's filmed entertainment backlog hit a record $1.2 billion as of September 30, while overall motion picture revenue during the latest quarter was $608 million, up 178 percent from the prior year.   

Within the motion picture segment, theatrical revenue came in at $116.2 million, up fivefold from the second quarter of 2011.

And the mini-studio’s home entertainment revenue from both motion pictures and TV was up 59 percent to $277.8 million.

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"With the home entertainment release of the first film in our Hunger Games franchise making significant contributions to our results in the quarter, we're clearly on track to meet or exceed our expectations this year,” Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer said in a statement, with an eye to an analyst call on Friday morning.

On the TV side, production revenue was $99 million in the second quarter, down 29 percent from the prior year quarter, as increases in domestic series licensing from Lionsgate Television were offset by fewer deliveries from the company's Debmar-Mercury syndication arm, and reduced digital media revenue.