It’s been revealed that Amazon has purchased MGM Studios for a reported $8.45 billion which means Amazon now owns the James Bond franchise.
Amazon has been showcasing films for some time in theatres, however, they’ve been putting most of its efforts into its Prime streaming platform, and they’ve just sent shock waves through Hollywood.
Other competitors including Netflix, Apple TV and Disney Plus were put on high alert last week as rumours grew about a potential sale of MGM Studios.
And today it has been confirmed that Amazon has purchased MGM for around 8.45 billion dollars. (£5.9 million).
MGM has long been looking for a potential buyer, and in the past 12 months actively been looking for a sale effectively putting themselves on the market.
With properties such as Rocky (and the Creed spinoffs), Hobbit, a huge back catalogue not to mention TV shows such as Handmaidens Tale it was an attractive package.
The Name’s Bond. James Bond…
Read more: Amazon in $9 billion sale talks
The biggest appeal perhaps for buyers is James Bond, and the 25th film in the franchise, No Time To Die due in September.
The Bond part is a little trickier, as the rights are split 50-50 between MGM (now part of Amazon) and Barbara Broccoli and Michael G Wilson whom also produce the series through EON.
They decide which and when the films are released, who plays the star role amongst other things and pretty much final say on everything to do with the project and are very protective over the character.
With Amazon’s potential unlimited funding for future productions, the future is certainly bright for James Bond.
And despite what you might read elsewhere there is absolutely no expectation Bond will be going straight to streaming as a result of this deal.
Due to the split in ownership, and the box office juggernaut that the character brings in return, it will always have its home on the silver screen.
Previous options for MGM were Apple TV (who recently baulked at the fee for Bond alone) and Comcast.
MGM of course is infamous for being a major studio in the golden years of Hollywood giving us classics such as The Wizard of Oz and Gone With The Wind.
What about Netflix?
The deal is certainly a huge coup for Amazon and really puts them front and center in the streaming game to compete more equally against the likes of Disney and Netflix.
Netflix isn’t able to compete financially with Amazon or Disney so this deal will open up some interesting competition between the three streaming giants.
Mike Hopkins, senior vice president of Prime Video and Amazon Studios, stated:
The real financial value behind this deal is the treasure trove of IP in the deep catalogue that we plan to reimagine and develop together with MGM‘s talented team.
With over 4,000 films in the back catalogue amongst 17,000 hours of television programming, a history since 1924 including 180 Academy Awards, Amazon has certainly picked up a golden egg.
It remains to be seen if they will keep the MGM branding which we expect they will (albeit with an Amazon moniker somewhere) and the deal still has to officially be finalized legally.
What are your thoughts?
Is this a good idea for Amazon?
Will you be more likely to watch Amazon Prime as a result?
Let us know in the comments below.
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