Specialty distributor Open Road Films is back in business.
Founded in 2011 by AMC Entertainment Inc. and Regal Entertainment Group, the distributor was sold to Tang Media Partners in 2017 and declared bankruptcy in 2018 before being purchased later that year by private equity firm Raven Capital Management. In the interim, the distributor released Spotlight, named Best Picture at the 2016 Oscars. Other films released over Open Road’s seven-year history include Nightcrawler, Chef, The Grey, The Nut Job, and Side Effects.
Open Road, in partnership with Briarcliff Entertainment, have already begun the work of acquiring new films for theatrical release. The first of Open Road’s new slate, the Liam Neeson starrer Honest Thief, will open in theaters later this summer. Moving forward, Open Road will acquire films ranging from small to mdi-range releases to those intended for a wider release.
“Theatrical distribution has been in the works for us for a while,” said James Masciello of Raven Capital Management. “It is a natural extension of the single picture and post theatrical distribution capabilities that we’ve been building out for the better part of a decade. We’re not naïve to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. It has and will continue to create unique challenges, but the cinematic experience is not going away, and challenges create opportunity.”
Added Tom Ortenberg, owner of Briarcliff Entertainment and founding CEO of Open Road Films: “It’s an honor and pleasure to be working with James and everyone at Raven to relaunch Open Road Films. We will continue the Open Road tradition of quality, commercially viable motion pictures and I look forward to many successes together.”