Legendary Pictures Moves to NBC-Universal

     July 10, 2013


We previously reported that the partnership between production company Legendary Pictures and Warner Bros. Studios was coming to a close.  Legendary, the company behind Inception, The Hangover, 42 as well as adapting the The Dark Knight Trilogy, Man of Steel, and other Warner Bros. properties, will now go to Universal Pictures.  Tull confirmed the news to The Wrap on the red carpet of Legendary and Warner’s latest picture, Pacific Rim.  Tull reportedly wanted to go beyond what Warner could offer, namely “a theme park and a television and cable network.”  The official announcement will likely come later today.

It’s a big step forward for Legendary now that they can produce films, but also develop content for television, whether it be through NBC or cable channels USA and SyFy.  There’s also the matter of Universal’s own franchises, which can be co-financed with the studio.  Legendary had massive success with franchises that had been languishing at Warners, and I’ll be interested to see what they’ll do over at Universal. [Update: We've added the press release after the jump.]

legendary-pictures-logoHere’s the press release:


Legendary to Leverage Comcast and NBCUniversal’s Businesses Including Universal Studios Theme Parks

UNIVERSAL CITY, CA, July 10, 2013 — Universal Pictures and Legendary Entertainment will enter into a multi-year film partnership in which the two companies will produce and co-finance Legendary and Universal films with Universal distributing Legendary films worldwide.  Making Universal its new home enables Legendary to not only leverage the power and success of Universal’s film business and theme parks, but also the cross promotional support from NBCUniversal and Comcast assets through the company’s “Symphony” program.  The announcement was made today by Universal Pictures Chairman Adam Fogelson and Co-Chairman Donna Langley and Legendary Entertainment Chairman and CEO Thomas Tull.

“Comcast and NBCUniversal’s global assets in film, television and theme parks offer Legendary unmatched breadth and opportunity to grow our business.  We are delighted to be in business with this exceptional team and look forward to a successful partnership,” said Tull.

Universal and Legendary’s film partnership is a complementary arrangement for both companies.  Legendary, which is known for producing and financing successful large scale films, will continue to create and finance tent pole films based on intellectual property that is uniquely appealing to the coveted fanboy audience.  And Universal, which has a proven track record of turning films of all shapes and sizes into hits with special skills in growing and nourishing original franchises, will market, co-finance and distribute Legendary films for five years beginning in 2014.

“Legendary has demonstrated a keen ability to identify and acquire powerful fresh intellectual property based ideas, match them with strong filmmakers and turn them into blockbuster hits,” said Fogelson and Langley.  “The Universal team is thrilled to have the opportunity to partner with Legendary in turning those ideas into the best and most successful versions of themselves around the world.”

Under the terms of the deal Universal and Legendary will jointly  identify opportunities to expand Legendary’s franchises and intellectual property into Universal’s theme parks, and Universal will have an opportunity to collaborate with Legendary on projects in China following Legendary’s historic deal with China Film Group.
“Legendary continues to prove that big ideas are relevant and profitable with our global movie-going audience.  We couldn’t be more thrilled to embrace the challenges and changing marketplace with Thomas and his team and we are also excited about what opportunities this will bring to our Theme Parks around the world,” said Ron Meyer, President and COO, Universal Studios.

“We are very excited to be in business with Thomas and Legendary,” said Steve Burke, CEO of NBCUniversal. “The partnership is a perfect fit for both companies and I am confident that together we will be in an even better position to deliver compelling, profitable entertainment content to a global audience for years to come.”

Around The Web
  • TBMachine

    What does this mean for Legendary’s involvement in Man of Steel sequels and other DC properties in the future? Will Nolan likely follow Legendary or stay at WB?

    • Mixed Race rich kid NYC

      Now, Warner brothers will fully finance all their DC properties. Nolan made movies with Warner bros. ,legendary just helped finance them…
      Nolan is grateful to Warner bros. for helping his career, so I don’t see him make movies with Universal because hats what he will do if he follows legendary

  • Alex Hajna

    I don’t wanna say it was a dumb move, because expanding to theme parks and television is definitely a good idea, but WB had and still has some of the biggest franchises in film history — Harry Potter, The Dark Knight Trilogy, The Hangover, The Hobbit, Superman… Not to mention the fact that they currently have DC, which is going to be a juggernaut in the next few years. Not something I’d be so quick to leave.

    • D

      Many of those franchises have already concluded for the (hopefully) near future. Universal has a back catalogue of monsters that I would expect we’ll start seeing trotted out for reboots soon.

  • occhile007

    Universal Pictures and Legendary Pictures Presents…
    “Fast and Furious 8 – Alaska Drift – Dom on Thin Ice”
    “Back to the Future – Part 4 – The George Mcfly Days”
    “E.T. – Part 2 – E.T Phones Home”
    Sorry, but I just couldn’t resist. : )

  • Person

    First itsem on their to-do list should be trying to salvage the Bourne franchise. Keep Renner, change everything else.

    • http://moviefy.net/ Yahzee

      … or ignore Legacy, and just leave it as the perfect trilogy it is.

  • stylus59

    i see battleship 2, aw hell no

  • http://moviefy.net/ Yahzee

    … so… of all the films produced by Warner and Legendary which ones stay at Warner? Pacific Rim? Godzilla?

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  • Brady1138

    So…no Godzilla 2 from Legendary :( Worrisome.