La La Land gamble saves studio's year

Lionsgate's scored three unlikely hits after a string of 2016 flops...

La La Land gamble saves studio's year

Mori AP/Press Association Images

Lionsgate has reported a 12% increase in revenue during its third quarter - growing to $752m in the final 12 weeks of 2016.

This represented a turnaround for the company which had struggled to fill multiplexes until the releases of La La LandHacksaw Ridge, and A Madea Halloween which were all hits.

On the surface a musical from 32 year old director Damien Chazelle who was in charge of only his fourth film (and working on a scale far beyond his previous projects), a violent war epic from former-Hollywood pariah Mel Gibson, and the eighth film in Tyler Perry's 'Madea' series did not look like obvious smash hits.

With La La Land on course to make some $300m from box offices sales (ten times its production cost) and 12 Oscar nominations securing its legacy (and boosting its future earning power) it's safe to say that the studio was right to gamble on the musical.

Hacksaw Ridge

Tyler Perry's film was made for $20m and grossed $75m - while Hacksaw Ridge cost $40m and has made $164m - and received six Oscar nominations.

The New York Times points out that the studio also owns 43% of Roadside Attractions which released Manchester by the Sea - when the film is included its total Oscar nomination count comes to 32.

Variety reports that the studio's hot streak - and its backing of La La Land - has prompted a number of leading producers to approach it with new projects.