We've known that Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, a long-standing but smaller Hollywood studio by today's telecommunication standards, has been on the bubble and aiming to sell for months . We also knew about a week ago that Amazon was looking hard at the studio and its library of content.
Well, that deal became official this morning, with Amazon and MGM formally arriving at a merger agreement and a price of $8.45 billion.
MGM not only holds the rights to big film franchises like James Bond, Rocky, The Pink Panther , and the Legally Blonde titles, but also the studio's popular TV properties like Fargo and The Handmaid's Tale .
MGM’s chairman Kevin Ulrich said in a statement, “I am very proud that MGM’s Lion, which has long evoked the Golden Age of Hollywood, will continue its storied history, and the idea born from the creation of United Artists lives on in a way the founders originally intended, driven by the talent and their vision. The opportunity to align MGM’s storied history with Amazon is an inspiring combination.”
You can peruse the studio's current stable of content on the MGM site .
'Legally Blonde' Credit: MGMThis is all coming on the heels of last week's huge news that AT&T might let WarnerMedia go to Discovery , shifting the production and distribution landscape in Hollywood significantly.
Amazon has generally focused on TV production in recent years, and it usually premieres content on the Prime platform, rather than theatrically.
Variety points out that Bond is shared with Eon Productions, which asserts a great deal of control over the franchise (including casting and distribution). If Amazon wants 007 to go day-and-date with a simultaneous theatrical and online release, it might meet resistance from Eon. And what about a streaming Bond TV show? Probably not. We'll have to see.
According to NBC , this is Amazon's second-largest acquisition. They took on Whole Foods in 2017 for $13.7 billion, if you remember.
What do you think? Is Amazon a good home for MGM? Let us know in the comments.