In a deal that brings new life to one of Hollywood’s better-known brands, Revolution Studios—founded by Joe Roth as a mini-major film and television producer in 2000–was purchased Wednesday by Content Partners and its CP Enterprises affiliate from the Fortress Investment Group, which has owned it since 2014.
Terms weren’t disclosed, but one person briefed on the deal said the purchase price approached $400 million. That puts it on a scale with the Content Partners acquisition of rights to the CSI television series in 2013. Fortress, a large private equity fund, was reported to have paid about $250 million for Revolution in June of 2014, and it later added to the studio’s existing library with purchases of rights to films, including those from Morgan Creek, Cold Spring, GK Films .
In an announcement, Content Partners said the Revolution feature film library currently has 126 titles, including Black Hawk Down, Daddy Day Care, Are We There Yet?, Mona Lisa Smile and Hellboy among its feature films, and the Anger Management series among its television properties. In all, Revolution has rights to 240 TV episodes, the companies said.
Started in 2006 largely as a vehicle for the purchase of star- and filmmaker-participations in movies and shows, Content Partners—which is managed by Steven H. Kram, a former William Morris executive, and Steven E. Blume, from the Brillstein-Grey management company—has quietly expanded its reach with the purchase of larger libraries and properties with on-going production potential. With the Revolution purchase, it now has over $1 billion in assets under management, according to a person briefed on its standing.
For Revolution, the sale brings a next round of activity, as it looks for sequels, remakes or other ways to exploit a library that includes films from Julia Roberts, Adam Sandler, Ice Cube and other stars who formed a kind of loyal repertory company for Roth when his company was closely allied with Starz Entertainment and Sony Pictures. In one such sequel, Paramount plans to release XXX: Return Of Xander Cage, an action film starring Vin Diesel, on January 20. Vince Totino, who has been Revolution’s chief executive under Fortress, will continue in his role, the companies said. Scott Hemming, who continues as chief operating officer, will also become president.
Before selling Revolution to Fortress, Roth had begun to work mostly as a producer of films like Alice In Wonderland, Snow White And The Huntsman, and Heaven Is For Real for his Roth Films company. Under Fortress, the Revolution library grew significantly, adding 80 movies to those produced in the Roth era. “We look forward to a long and profitable collaboration with Vince and Scott and the rest of the Revolution team,” Kram and Blume said in a statement.