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Open Road Films

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Open Road Films, LLC
FormerlyGlobal Road Entertainment, LLC (2017–2018)
Company typeSubsidiary
PredecessorIM Global
FoundedMarch 26, 2011; 13 years ago (2011-03-26)
FounderTom Ortenberg
HeadquartersLos Angeles, California, U.S.
Key people
James Masciello
Matt Sidari
ParentRaven Capital Management[1]

Open Road Films, LLC (formerly known briefly as Global Road Entertainment) is an American independent film production and distribution company based in Los Angeles, California. It was founded by Tom Ortenberg on March 26, 2011, as a joint venture between the two largest American theatrical exhibitors, AMC Theatres and Regal Entertainment Group, which both owned the company until it was bought out by Tang Media Partners, a media company owned by Donald Tang, in August 2017.

After Tang's purchase, both companies Open Road and IM Global merged and formed "Global Road Entertainment".[2] In September 2018, Open Road declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy. The bankruptcy did not affect TMP, IM Global or IM Global TV.

On November 6, 2018, Open Road agreed to be purchased by Raven Capital Management. Raven completed its acquisition in February 2019.[1]

Company history[edit]

Open Road Films (first incarnation)[edit]

In March 2011, rival theater chains AMC Entertainment and Regal Entertainment Group announced the hiring of Tom Ortenberg as chief executive officer of a new company, Open Road Films. Ortenberg, previously an executive of Lionsgate and The Weinstein Company,[3] filled out his executive team with the April 2011 hirings of Jason Cassidy (president of marketing), Elliott Kleinberg (General Counsel and executive vice president of operations and business affairs), Steven Andriuzzo (chief financial officer), and Ben Cotner (senior vice president of acquisitions).[4]

Open Road's titles are distributed in the home entertainment market by Universal Pictures Home Entertainment (UPHE), a deal that was signed in June 2011.[5] In June 2011, a few months after it started operations, Open Road Films signed a pay-TV deal with Netflix,[6] which expired in 2016. After Showtime expires in 2020, Netflix re-added Open Road movies in 2020.

The studio released its first film, Killer Elite, on September 23, 2011, directed by Gary McKendry and starring Jason Statham, Clive Owen and Robert De Niro.[7] Open Road's 2015 film Spotlight received six Academy Award nominations and became the surprise winner for Best Picture at the 88th Academy Awards, also winning for Best Original Screenplay. These were the first Oscar wins for the company.[8]

In October 2013, the studio signed a pay-TV deal with Showtime that began in 2017 and expires in 2020.[9] Open Road and UPHE extended its home distribution deal in February 2014 through 2017.[10]

On October 30, 2014, Open Road announced an international deal with FilmNation Entertainment. The deal would allow the company to purchase worldwide rights and FilmNation selling and servicing international distribution.[11]

Global Road Entertainment[edit]

Logo of Global Road Entertainment.

Tom Ortenberg left Open Road Films and it was purchased by Tang Media Partners in August 2017.[12] Rob Friedman joined Tang Media Partners in August 2017 as chairman and CEO of TMP Entertainment to oversee Open Road, IM Global and IM Global TV.[13] Open Road Films merged with IM Global and formed Global Road Entertainment on October 30, 2017, with Friedman assuming the Global Road chairman and CEO posts.[2]

In 2017, the company announced plans to have a slate of approximately 15 films per year by 2020.[14][15] At the European Film Market in February 2018, Global Road announced that it anticipated spending $1 billion on film and television productions over the next three years,[16] with production budgets projected to be in the $20 million to $100 million range.[16] In 2018, the company made an agreement with Blumhouse Productions to co-develop and co-finance low budget Chinese language genre films.[17]

Global Road's 2018 film distribution slate includes the teen drama Midnight Sun, starring Bella Thorne and Patrick Schwarzenegger;[18] family comedy Show Dogs, starring Will Arnett;[18] science fiction thriller The Silence, which it acquired for US distribution;[19] the action-thriller Hotel Artemis, starring Jodie Foster and Sterling K. Brown;[20] science fiction family adventure A.X.L.;[21] and animated family adventure-comedy Playmobil: Uncharted.[21]

Upcoming Global Road productions include Serenity, a neo-noir thriller starring Anne Hathaway, Matthew McConaughey, Diane Lane and directed by Steven Knight;[15] Richard Says Goodbye, a comedy-drama starring Johnny Depp and directed by Wayne Roberts;[15] the science-fiction romance Zoe, starring Ewan McGregor;[15][22] and Mortal, directed by André Øvredal.[15] The company's film I Think We're Alone Now, starring Peter Dinklage, Elle Fanning and Paul Giamatti, premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival.[23]

Global Road's television arm develops scripted and non-scripted programming for both U.S. and global markets. Shows being developed include Cat's Cradle, a limited series based on the novel by Kurt Vonnegut, being written and executive produced by Noah Hawley for FX; Kilroy County, a dark comedy from Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor being developed for Showtime; Jenji Kohan's Lifetime drama American Princess;[24] Muscle Shoals, a drama in development at ABC with Johnny Depp as executive producer;[25][26] the eight-part crime drama Cold Courage, based on the novels by Pekka Hiltunen;[27] Fried Chicken and Latkes, an adaptation of Rain Pryor's one-woman comedy show;[28] Jett, a crime drama starring and executive produced by Carla Gugino for Cinemax;[29] the reality cooking competition Fridge Wars for Canada's CBC network;[30] and global rights to Idiotest, based on the Game Show Network quiz show.[31]

In January 2018, Global Road signed a development deal with Reginald Hudlin and Byron Phillips through their company New Nation Networks, under which Hudlin and Phillips would develop and produce original content for Global Road.[32] Later that month, the company signed a first-look television deal with Adam Shankman and Jennifer Gibgot's production company Offspring Entertainment;[26] projects announced under this deal include Wolfgang, based on the life of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and an untitled comedy from husband-and-wife actor-producers Carlos and Alexa PenaVega.[26] Around the same time, Global Road also announced co-development deals with French production company Newen and the Ukrainian Film.UA Group.[30]

Financing issues[edit]

Global Road's film unit was taken over by its primary lenders, Bank of America and East West Bank, in August 2018 as Donald Tang had not raised enough funds for Global Road. Lenders did have Global Road release A.X.L. while stopping the release of City of Lies, slated for September 7, 2018.[33][34] With A.X.L. not doing well at the box office, the company was forced to lay off employees without severance, a requirement of the lenders. The company was also looking to sell a number of its upcoming films, Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank, City of Lies, The Silence, Duck Duck Goose, Arctic Justice and Playmobil The Movie; it was also "backing out of" development for The Secret Garden.[33] The company was also sued along with TV rights distributor Miramax by lender Bank Leumi over loans for City of Lies.[35]

On September 6, 2018, Global Road's film unit filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.[36] On October 23, 2018, Global Road filed with the court plans for an auction of its assets beginning November 7 with a stalking horse bidder selected with term of $800,000 in expenses coverage and a $2.1 million outbid fee if approve by the judge.[37] In November 2018 after lack luster auction bidding, Open Road agreed to be purchased by Raven Capital Management for $87.5 million pending court approval.[38] On December 19, 2018, a Delaware bankruptcy judge approved the purchase and the acquisition took effect on February 7, 2019.[1]

Open Road Films (second incarnation)[edit]

Open Road Films indicated its comeback in June 2020 at the virtual Cannes by announcing its recapitalization by Raven and named the production company's leadership of Raven principal James Masciello with key assistance from Matt Sidari. The company also announced it was partnering with Briarcliff Entertainment, Tom Ortenberg's new company, in acquiring and releasing films starting with Honest Thief. Raven also indicated that it was a financier of Sculptor Media, whom Raven would look toward for development and production of films.[39]


In August 2017, Rob Friedman was named Global Road's chairman and CEO after Eric Hohl left the company.[40][19] Rodolphe Buet was named president of international in October 2017,[15] and the following month Lynn Harris was named president of worldwide production.[41][42] In early 2018, Jack Pan was named president of worldwide theatrical marketing.[43]

In March 2018, the company announced several new hires to their international operations division, including Charlotte Van Weede as President of International Sales (replacing Michael Rothstein); Brad Kembel as Executive Vice President of Distribution and Operations; Melissa Martinez as Executive Vice President of International Marketing; and Sarah Genazzani as Director of International Marketing, with Executive Vice President of International Sales Tatyana Joffe extending her contract to work with the new team.[44]

Distribution library[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Maddaus, Gene (December 19, 2018). "Open Road Bankruptcy Sale to Raven Capital Approved by Judge". Variety. Retrieved January 10, 2019.
  2. ^ a b McNary, Dave (October 30, 2017). "IM Global, Open Road Owner Tang Media Rebrands as Global Road Entertainment". Variety. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  3. ^ Szalai, Georg (March 7, 2011). "AMC Entertainment, Regal to Acquire and Release 8–10 Films a Year". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved June 2, 2011.
  4. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (April 13, 2011). "AMC/Regal's Film Distribution Venture Open Road Sets Executive Team". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved April 2, 2015.
  5. ^ McNary, Dave (June 16, 2011). "Open Road pacts with Universal Home Ent". Variety.
  6. ^ Fritz, Ben (June 28, 2012). "Company Town". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 28, 2011.
  7. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (June 8, 2011). "Open Road Sets First Release With Fall Date On Killer Elite". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved April 2, 2015.
  8. ^ Cunningham, Todd (February 29, 2016). "Open Road Boss Dedicates Spotlight Oscar Win to Sexual Abuse Victims". thewrap.com (The Wrap). Retrieved April 7, 2016.
  9. ^ "Open Road Inks Deal to Bring Pics to Showtime". October 1, 2013. Retrieved October 1, 2013.
  10. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (February 10, 2014). "Open Road Extends Ancillaries Deal With Universal Studios Home Entertainment". Deadline. Retrieved February 10, 2014.
  11. ^ Jaafar, Ali (October 30, 2014). "Open Road Goes Global With FilmNation Partnership – AFM". Deadline. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  12. ^ Lang, Brent (March 2, 2016). "Spotlight Studio Sells to Tang Media". Variety. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  13. ^ Busch, Anita (August 8, 2017). "Rob Friedman Named Chairman/CEO Of Donald Tang's TMP Entertainment". Deadline. Retrieved August 3, 2018.
  14. ^ Tartaglione, Nancy (February 15, 2018). "Global Road Anticipates $1B Production Spend Over Next Three Years". Deadline. Retrieved September 11, 2018.
  15. ^ a b c d e f Tartaglione, Nancy (October 15, 2017). "Tang Media Partners Hires Rodolphe Buet As President Of International". Deadline. Retrieved September 11, 2018.
  16. ^ a b Frater, Patrick (February 15, 2018). "Berlin: Global Road Touts Billion-Dollar Investment Plan". Variety. Retrieved September 11, 2018.
  17. ^ Frater, Patrick (June 18, 2018). "Jason Blum-Donald Tang Hatch Chinese Genre Film Production Pact". Variety. Retrieved June 29, 2018.
  18. ^ a b Jerde, Sara (January 22, 2018). "Indie Film Studio Global Road Taps MullenLowe Mediahub as Agency of Record". Adweek. Retrieved September 11, 2018.
  19. ^ a b Tartaglione, Nancy (February 1, 2018). "IM Global Execs Greg Shapiro, Cristina Garza Exit Global Road Entertainment". Deadline. Retrieved September 11, 2018.
  20. ^ Busch, Anita (February 22, 2018). "Global Road Entertainment Acquires Drew Pearce's Action Thriller Hotel Artemis". Deadline. Retrieved September 11, 2018.
  21. ^ a b Kay, Jeremy (February 16, 2018). "Global Road targets $1bn production war chest | News | Screen". Screendaily. Retrieved September 11, 2018.
  22. ^ "Amazon Prime Picks Up Drake Doremus Futuristic Love Story Zoe – Tribeca". Deadline. April 20, 2018. Retrieved June 29, 2018.
  23. ^ Nicholson, Amy (January 21, 2018). "I Think We're Alone Now Review". Variety.com. Retrieved September 11, 2018.
  24. ^ "Jenji Kohan's American Princess Sets Cast at Lifetime". Hollywood Reporter. April 24, 2018. Retrieved June 29, 2018.
  25. ^ "Johnny Depp-Produced Muscle Shoals Drama From Global Road Entertainment Set At ABC". Deadline. April 26, 2018. Retrieved June 29, 2018.
  26. ^ a b c Hipes, Patrick (January 9, 2018). "Adam Shankman & Jennifer Gibgot's Offspring Inks Global Road TV Deal". Deadline. Retrieved September 4, 2018.
  27. ^ "MTG's Viaplay to show Cold Courage". C21Media. April 11, 2018. Retrieved September 4, 2018.
  28. ^ "Norman Lear Adapting Rain Pryor's Fried Chicken and Latkes for TV (Exclusive)". Hollywood Reporter. April 12, 2018. Retrieved September 4, 2018.
  29. ^ "Carla Gugino to Star in Cinemax Straight-to-Series Crime Drama Jett". Hollywood Reporter. April 18, 2018. Retrieved September 4, 2018.
  30. ^ a b Vlessing, Etan (May 14, 2018). "Reality Series Fridge Wars in the Works From Global Road Entertainment". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 1, 2018.
  31. ^ "Global Road Entertainment Gets in the Game Show Business With Idiotest". Hollywood Reporter. April 9, 2018. Retrieved September 4, 2018.
  32. ^ Holloway, Daniel (January 25, 2018). "Global Road Signs Co-Development Deal With Reginald Hudlin, Byron Phillips". Variety. Retrieved September 4, 2018.
  33. ^ a b McNary, Dave (August 28, 2018). "Global Road Layoffs Begin in Los Angeles and London". Variety. Retrieved September 4, 2018.
  34. ^ Lang, Brent (August 21, 2018). "Global Road in Crisis: Banks Take Control of Studio". Variety. Retrieved September 4, 2018.
  35. ^ Maddaus, Gene; Lang, Brent (September 4, 2018). "Global Road on Verge of Bankruptcy Filing". Variety. Retrieved September 4, 2018.
  36. ^ "Global Road Files Chapter 11 Bankruptcy for Film Division". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 7, 2018.
  37. ^ Gardner, Eriq (October 23, 2018). "Open Road Reaches $87.5 Million Deal With Stalking Horse Bidder". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved October 23, 2018.
  38. ^ "Open Road Bankruptcy: Auction Called Off; Raven Capital Set to Acquire Spotlight Studio". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved November 9, 2018.
  39. ^ Fleming, Mike Jr. (June 22, 2020). "Open Road Re-Launches With Raven Capital Funding & Return Of Founding CEO Tom Ortenberg; First Release Will Be Liam Neeson-Thriller Honest Thief". Deadline. Retrieved June 22, 2020.
  40. ^ Dave McNary, "IM Global, Open Road Owner Tang Media Rebrands as Global Road Entertainment," Variety, October 30, 2017.
  41. ^ Mike Fleming Jr, "Shallows Producer & Former New Line, WB Exec Lynn Harris Named Global Road WW Production President," Deadline.com, November 28, 2017.
  42. ^ Pamela McClintock, "Global Road Names Lynn Harris President of Worldwide Production," The Hollywood Reporter, November 28, 2017.
  43. ^ Dave McNary, "Jack Pan Tapped as Marketing President for Global Road Entertainment," Variety, November 8, 2017.
  44. ^ Wiseman, Andreas (March 6, 2018). "Global Road Solidifies International Operations With Key Hires Including Charlotte Van Weede As Sales Chief". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved August 1, 2018.

External links[edit]