MGM reports strong quarter off 'Skyfall,' 'Hobbit' success

Buoyed by billion-dollar box-office blockbusters “Skyfall” and “The Hobbit:  An Unexpected Journey,” MGM Holdings Inc., the parent of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc., posted fourth-quarter net income of $40.2 million.

The Beverly Hills-based production company also said in a statement that it had posted revenue of $902.6 million for the three-month period that ended Dec. 31 -- a sizable increase over the $136.7 million taken in during the same quarter in 2011. 

The privately held company, which emerged from bankruptcy in December 2010, attributed its success in part to its two fourth-quarter blockbusters. "Skyfall," the latest James Bond film, grossed $1.1 billion worldwide; "The Hobbit," the first in a series of films based on the J.R.R.  Tolkien book, took in $1 billion globally, according to Box Office Mojo.

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MGM Chairman and Chief Executive Gary Barber noted in a statement that with those two films' box-office performances, the company now lays claim to two of the top 15 films in box-office history.

"Our unprecedented success and extraordinary financial performance this past year were made possible by the contributions and strength of our team at MGM and our partners around the world,” Barber said in a statement.

MGM also reported 2012 revenue of $1.38 billion, up 97% from the $699 million the company took in during 2011.

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The 89-year-old studio also is considering a public offering. In mid-2012, the company filed a draft registration statement for an IPO with the Securities and Exchange Commission. 

The first film project slated to be released by MGM that was developed under the Barber regime is a remake of horror movie "Carrie." The film, which will star Chloe Grace Moretz in the titular role, has an Oct. 18 release date. Sony Pictures Releasing is handling the distribution.

Also on deck for the company is "RoboCop," a remake of the 1987 action picture of the same name. The film, to be distributed by Sony Pictures Releasing, will hit theaters February 2014.

Also on Monday, Paramount Pictures and MGM announced that they would make a sequel to “Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters,” which was released in January and has grossed about $206 million worldwide. The fairy tale reboot took in just $55 million domestically, but cost the companies an estimated $50 million to make. Like the first film, the follow-up is slated to be produced by Will Ferrell, Adam McKay and Kevin Messick of Gary Sanchez Productions and Beau Flynn.


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