Paramount signs film deal with Marvel
"Marvel has become a marquee entertainment brand," said Brad Grey, Paramount Pictures chairman and CEO. "It speaks to Marvel's strength in the marketplace and the great popularity of its brand and characters that Marvel can obtain such innovative financing for its film slate. We are thrilled to partner with them in this new venture."
Under the terms of the deal, film production will be financed by a revolving credit facility provided by Merrill Lynch. That facility will be secured against rights to ten of Marvel's comic titles. This method of financing will enable Marvel to have a production stake in the films - a first for the company - further enabling it to begin to build its own film library.
For its part, Paramount will provide some financing for promotion and advertising costs for each movie as part of the distribution deal. It will also receive a distribution fee and will hold the worldwide distribution rights for all films covered by the agreement.
"We are excited to be building our own film slate, and to be doing so using non-recourse financing," said Avi Arad, Marvel chairman and CEO. "Paramount Pictures has the most collaborative and creative team in the business to help us market our films. Under its new leadership, we've found Paramount to be exceptional in every way and look forward to working together for a long, long time."
Some of Marvel's comics have had successful big-screen adaptations, among them X-Men and Spiderman. Others, such as Elektra, did not fare so well at the box office.