Amazon and MGM have announced the completion of an $8.5 billion deal. The iconic studio with nearly 100 years of history – more than 4,000 movie titles, 17,000 TV series, 180 Academy Awards and 100 Emmy Awards – is now part of Amazon and will “complement the work of Prime Video and Amazon Studios with a diverse offering of entertainment choices for customers” , Amazon said in a statement.
Amazon Studios and the Prime Video streaming service are run by Mike Hopkins. Nothing is said about the management structure of the two studios. A spokesperson for the digital giant said it plans to make offers and hire all current MGM employees.
It’s still early days, with the deal closed yesterday, March 17, 2022, but here’s more to learn about the new organization: In terms of production, Amazon is excited about the MGM program and doesn’t expect any changes to release dates or current projects; Amazon has no plans to make all MGM content exclusive to Prime Video; As far as theatrical releases go, Amazon intends to continue to support them, not as a one-time offering, but as something that will be determined on a case-by-case basis; finally, there are no plans to make any changes to the franchise James Bond.
“MGM has nearly a century of experience in producing exceptional entertainment, and we share their commitment to delivering a wide range of original films and TV shows to a global audience,” said Hopkins, whose title is Senior Vice President of Prime Video and Amazon Studios. “We welcome MGM staff, creators and talent to Prime Video and Amazon Studios and look forward to working together to create even more opportunities to deliver quality storytelling to our customers.”
Amazon Studios and Prime Video are part of Amazon’s Global Media & Entertainment division, led by Jeff Blackburn, which includes music, podcasts/Wondery, Audible, games, Twitch and other services. Blackburn, a longtime assistant to Jeff Bezos, returned to Amazon in 2021 to take on this new role.
Chris Brearton, Chief Operating Officer of MGM, said: “We are thrilled that MGM and its iconic brands, iconic films and TV shows, and our amazing team and creative partners are joining the Prime Video family. MGM is responsible for this. for creating some of the most famous and critically acclaimed films and television series of the last century. Prime Video and Amazon Studios for delivering the best entertainment for viewers for years to come.”
The news means that the US Federal Trade Commission has refused to take legal action to block the merger or impose conditions on a landmark deal that comes in the wake of the collapse of WarnerMedia’s other mega-merger with Discovery, which is expected to close in April. Earlier this week, Amazon received unconditional approval from the European Commission for the merger.
The $1.56 billion e-commerce giant has acquired the century-old studio behind the franchises. James Bond as well as rocky investors led by Anchorage Capital, whose founder Kevin Ulrich is chairman of MGM. The deal is the first in a long-awaited marriage between wealthy tech players and Hollywood.
The price is considered high, but it has little effect on the Bezos-founded e-commerce giant, which relies on MGM’s vast library to upgrade its 11-year-old Prime Video streaming service. Prime Video supports Amazon Prime, the world’s largest consumer loyalty program and one of the key elements of the Amazon empire.
Amazon said last month that more than 200 million Amazon Prime subscribers worldwide streamed series and movies on Amazon Prime in 2021. U.S. streamer rates were recently increased by $2/month ($14.99/month) and the annual subscription increased from $119 to $139. .
Amazon reported $470 billion in revenue for all of last year and $137 billion for the fourth quarter, with net income of $33 billion and $14 billion, respectively. Amazon stock is on the rise and the gauntlet is intent on making the latter a lot more affordable.
In announcing the deal, founder Bezos said it was based on intellectual property and promised to “help preserve MGM’s film heritage and catalog, and give customers better access to these existing works.” Amazon will also “enable MGM to continue doing what it does best, which is telling great stories.”
Since then, Bezos has ditched day-to-day operations at Amazon, leaving the keys to the giant to its new CEO, Andrew Jassi, the former head of Amazon Web Services. Amazon Studios remains under the direction of Jennifer Salke as Matt Newman, co-head of cinematography, joins Prime Video’s global sports group to develop sports documentaries, films and scripts. Julie Rapaport remains head of Amazon Films. Rapaport will continue to report to Salke, while Newman will report to Marie Donoghue, vice president of Global Sports Video.
MGM, led by Chairman Michael De Luca and President Pamela Abdi, has recently made great strides in licorice pizza Paul Thomas Anderson, House of Gucci and the latest Bond film, The Dying Can Wait. Its library includes titles such as 12 Angry Men, Basic Instinct, Creed, James Bond, Legally Blonde, Moonstruck, Poltergeist, Raging Bull, RoboCop, Rocky, Silence of the Lambs, Stargate, Thelma and Louise, Tomb Raider, Magnificent Seven, Pink Panther as well as Thomas Crown caseto list just a few of them. Notable television series directed by Mark Burnett include Fargo, The Handmaid’s Tale as well as vikings.
This year, Amazon received several Oscar nominations for the film. Be Ricardo Aaron Sorkin, Nicole Kidman and Javier Bardem. In September, the streamer will launch the first of five planned seasons of the long-awaited and especially expensive TV show The Lord of the Rings: The Ring of Power. Underground Railroad, Jack Ryan, The Amazing Mrs. Meisel, Rubbishas well as boys among other things form the programming of the streamer.