It's been a long half year for Miramax. It all started with rumblings that Harvey and Bob Weinstein were interested in buying back Miramax -- the company they founded, named after their parents, sold to Disney, and then left when they parted ways with the Mouse House. Though they now have The Weinstein Company, the pull of Miriam and Max remained. But just as that news was bubbling, a big announcement hit: Miramax was closing, and the library was up for sale. What followed was a long road of ups and downs as businessmen with heaps of cash circled the company.
The Weinsteins were only one of the bidders, and though they tried to bounce back from every financial set-back on their quest to reunite with their first studio, it wasn't enough.
Deadline reports that Ron Tutor and Colony Capital have officially won their campaign for $660 million, as Disney fires off a press release and says goodbye to the company that's offered titles like Pulp Fiction, No Country for Old Men, and Shakespeare in Love. This amount is only slightly higher than the $625-$650 million the Weinsteins were offering, though Deadline hears that, ultimately, Disney might make a little more as it collects distribution fees for the next year.
But we may hear of more Miramax squirmishes yet. As I wrote earlier this month, the brothers Weinstein made "an iron clad" exit agreement when they left Disney, giving them the right to ok or veto any sequels that come out of the Miramax library. It wasn't a bit of information that bothered Tutor, however. Sources say that Tutor's camp "don't believe they need to work with the Weinsteins to do the deal or to make sequels."
Now we wait and see what Tutor does with his newly acquired studio. It's quite up in the air at this point. We must remember that he was once partners with the money and drama-plagued David Bergstein, and he just took Nailed over from David O. Russell as the filmmaker and producers left. Russell was polite about the split, but producers Doug Wick and Lucy Fisher released statements that Tutor expected "unfair" concessions (sources say he wanted to cut their fees in half).
Will Tutor's hardball help Miramax? What do you think of the whole affair?