Thursday, March 03, 2011

Starz Unloads

... a large piece of its Canadian digital studio.

A Canadian group is buying control of Starz Animation Toronto, a digital media studio that created the recently released feature film "Gnomeo & Juliet."

Financial terms of the transaction aren't being disclosed.

Starz LLC will continue to own a minority stake in the studio but plans to focus on live action-TV programming. ...

Starz has been looking to get out of the animation business for some little while. What the company really wants to pursue is movies and t.v. with flesh and blood actors, not animated stuff. When it ended up with California and Ontario cartoon studios after a stock swap with IDT Entertainment a few years ago, parts of Starz's freshly-acquired animation subsidiaries shuttered almost immediately. (The company's fledgling feature animation division closed within months.)

Starz's California studio was close to being sold until a disagreement over corporate financial obligations scotched the deal. But we're betting that the big cable company won't be running any cartoon businesses for very much longer.


Anonymous said...

Wow, Starz has a hit animated feature...and they don't want to make more of them? Unusual career decision right there.

Though, I guess Touchtone is the one reaping the profits of Gnomeo. Nonetheless, Starz should continue making more animated films, as it's always nice to see more successful animation studios out there.

Anonymous said...

Gnomeo and Juliet has yet to make any actual profit.

Mike said...

Gnomeo was work for hire for Starz.

Anonymous said...

What if no one wants Film Roman? What's it worth? They have no assets, just work for hire animation and highly paid employees.

Will it just close down, and let someone else produce the animation for The Simpsons?

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