By Anne Thompson | Thompson on Hollywood May 23, 2012 at 9:48AM
At Cannes for the first time in their new roles as co-chairs of Lionsgate Motion Picture Group, ex-Summit co-chiefs Patrick Wachsberger, long a major player on the international distribution and film sales scene, and Rob Friedman are wielding some muscle on the Croisette. Lionsgate and French distribution giant StudioCanal are enlarging their pre-existing partnership by renewing their library distribution agreement for Lionsgate to distribute more than 2000 StudioCanal titles, such as "Grand Illusion," "The Last Exorcism," "Terminator 2."
Additionally, StudioCanal will also release "Catching Fire," the next installment of "The Hunger Games" franchise in German speaking territories, where the first film has grossed $24 million at the box office. "The Hunger Games" has grossed almost $400 million in North America and is closing on $650 million worldwide.
“STUDIOCANAL exemplifies the global reach, market leadership and innovative thinking of the media companies with whom we are partnered around the world,” stated Wachsberger, Friedman and Motion Picture Group President Steve Beeks. "Our StudioCanal partnership has been an important part of our growth around the world, and we believe that they will become an even more important part of our future.”
Olivier Courson, Chairman of StudioCanal stated: “Lionsgate has always been a great partner to StudioCanal...In the UK we are partners in the leading independents home entertainment operation Elevation. And in Germany, we have a long term relationship on current films and are very happy to have "The Hunger Games." Strengthening our partnership with an even stronger Lionsgate on a long term basis is a great opportunity for StudioCanal."
The StudioCanal library includes DVD, television, on demand and digital rights to titles from the Carolco and DEG libraries, including "Terminator 2: Judgment Day," "Total Recall," "Basic Instinct," "Rambo," "Tender Mercies," and "Evil Dead II" and French classics from "Rules of the Game" to "That Obscure Object of Desire" and "The Discreet Charm of the Bourgeoisie."