Santa Monica-based Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. laid off 80 employees Wednesday, accounting for about 7% of the studio's total work force.
Laid-off employees--who were spread throughout MGM's distribution, production, sales and marketing departments--will receive six months' pay plus health benefits, MGM spokesman Craig Parsons said.
He called the reductions part of a cost-cutting effort, and said MGM may take an unspecified a third-quarter charge related to the layoffs.
MGM, controlled by billionaire investor Kirk Kerkorian, has struggled through recent flops like "Species II" and "Dirty Work." The company plans a $500-million rights offering to raise cash.
Sources at the studio say MGM is seriously considering a bid for PolyGram Filmed Entertainment, the film production/distribution wing of PolyGram, as a way to boost its film library by adding PolyGram's 1,500 titles.