Lantern Entertainment has agreed to create a fund for The Weinstein Co.’s unsecured creditors, a group that includes co-founder Harvey Weinstein’s accusers as well as the actors, directors and others in Hollywood who say they’re still owed money for their participation in the bankrupt studio’s films and television shows.
The Dallas-based private equity firm pledged to contribute $8.75 million to an escrow fund to pay participation and other claims, according to documents filed late today in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware. That sum is in addition to the $289 million purchase price for The Weinstein Co.’s assets.
It is unclear how far this amount will go toward making Weinstein’s alleged victims, and Hollywood actors, directors and producers, whole. The debtors will determine how these funds will be allocated, sources say.
Some of Hollywood’s most prominent actors, directors, producers and writers today raised objections to the sale of The Weinstein Company to Lantern Capital, raising concerns about the private equity firm’s willingness to make good on the bankrupt company’s contractual obligations.
The list of those who say they’re still waiting for their checks includes a who’s who of Hollywood elites including Brad Pitt, David O. Russell, George Clooney, Jake Gyllenhaal, John Cusack, Julia Roberts, Meryl Streep, Rachel McAdams and Robert Di Niro, as well as CAA. Quentin Tarantino said he’s owed $4.3 million in unpaid royalties and participations in connection with four of his films distributed by The Weinstein Co.
Court papers spell out, in vivid detail, how disagreements over who would pay these outstanding claims nearly derailed the deal.
Robert Del Genio, the chief restructuring officer of The Weinstein Co., said in a deposition that the disagreements over these payments — known in bankruptcy parlance as “cure amounts” — arose after the bankruptcy court designated Lantern the successful bidder for the company’s film and television assets.
The Weinstein Co. maintained that the purchase agreement required Lantern to pay the participation fees and other debts associated with the projects it would acquire. Lantern said it had no intentions of paying the bankrupt studio’s old bills.
(Excerpt) Read More at: Deadline.com