Netflix deal to make Epix profitable

CEO says deal will turn it profitable for next fiscal year

NEW YORK -- The $1 billion, five-year exclusive Internet streaming deal with Netflix will help make Epix profitable for its fiscal year that starts in October, Epix CEO Mark Greenberg told The Hollywood Reporter Tuesday.

"This and our other deals will make us profitable for our next fiscal year," he said. "We have kept our costs and burn rate low."

Asked about the ongoing financial troubles of MGM, Greenberg said they haven't been much of a distraction as his team has focused on working with "the phenomenal library (that) MGM has."

Still, he acknowledged that new film releases would help. "Our expectation is that by the end of the year they are out of this dance with the Wall Street community and the bankers, and then they are on a course going forward, which should be great news for us," he said. "They are planning on releasing some movies next year, which we would like to see them do."

Asked about Lionsgate's continued showdown with dissident shareholder Carl Icahn, Greenberg said that issue "seems to be finding its equilibrium as well." Highlighting that 16 Lionsgate films will come to Epix next year, Greenberg gave Lionsgate management credit for not being too distracted. "They are running their business," he said.