Freelance journalist Don Groves is a Deadline contributor based in Sydney.
EXCLUSIVE: Hoyts Distribution, which handles The Twilight Saga franchise in Australia, is on the market. Private equity firm Pacific Equity Partners, which bought the Hoyts group for $A440M in 2007, is anxious to sell before the final installment Breaking Dawn Part 2 opens in November. PEP in 2010 flagged its intention to unload the entire group that was once owned by Kerry Packer and includes the second-largest cinema chain in Australia and New Zealand and a screen advertising business, but nothing came of it. Headed by Robert Slaviero, Hoyts Distribution has amassed a sizable library since it launched in 2001 and one rival distributor estimates the division’s worth at about $40M. PEP and Hoyts execs made presentations to potential buyers at the Cannes market. The sale has ramifications for U.S. suppliers as Hoyts has contracted to release a bunch of titles through 2013 including Killing Them Softly, Alex Cross, Robosapien: Rebooted 3D, The Impossible, The Sweeney, The Host, Broken City, Thunder Run 3D and Necromancer.