STX Signs Exclusive, Worldwide Agreement With Universal Music Publishing Group

Robert Simonds

As part of the agreement, UMPG will administer and represent the studio’s future soundtracks, scores and catalog of related music publishing rights across all media.

STX Entertainment has struck another key deal in broadening its scope as a full-fledged studio.

The company, headed up Robert Simonds, has signed an exclusive, worldwide agreement with Universal Music Publishing Group, one of the world’s leading music publishers.

As part of the agreement, UMPG will administer and represent the studio’s future soundtracks, scores and catalog of related music publishing rights across all media. STX is currently on track to produce, market and distribute 12-15 major motion pictures a year. Upcoming films from the company include the thriller Secret in Their Eyes, starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Nicole Kidman and Julia Roberts; The Boy, a horror film from director William Brent Bell and starring Lauren Cohan; and the action-drama The Free State of Jones, starring Matthew McConaughey, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Keri Russell and Mahershala Ali from writer-director Gary Ross.

The deal was announced jointly by UMPG chairman and CEO Jody Gerson, STX Entertainment president Sophie Watts, STX COO Thomas McGrath and STX's head of music Jason Markey.

"STX Entertainment is an exciting new studio and media company with a fantastic production slate, and we have great respect for the entire management team," Gerson said. "I’m very pleased to be a part of this opportunity to work with STX from the ground floor and look forward to a long and creative partnership."

Added Watts: “As we have been building our studio, we have aligned ourselves with the best and most respected market leaders in the industry. Universal Music Publishing Group is a pivotal pillar as we add music to our portfolio of ancillary content and distribution partnerships,” said Watts. “To have our motion picture music rights represented all over the world by UMPG gives us the support of a true global giant, and we are thrilled that Jody Gerson and her team are our partners. This is a win-win for both of our companies.”

STX, which specializes in the production, marketing and distribution of talent-driven films, digital and TV programming, recently released its first feature film, The Gift. The company also recently acquired Hardcore and Desierto, both at the Toronto Film Festival. STX is currently in production on The Space Between Us, starring Gary Oldman, Asa Butterfield, Carla Gugino and Britt Robertson; and Besties, starring Hailee Steinfeld, Woody Harrelson and Kyra Sedgwick. Additionally, STX has five films set to start production over the next four months.

UMPG represents music in every genre from some of the world’s most important songwriters and catalogs including Adele, The Beach Boys, Eminem, Randy Newman, Diane Warren and Andrew Lloyd Webber.