CBS/Fox Video - History - Joint Venture

Joint Venture

In 1982, CBS formed a 50-50 venture with 20th Century Fox after Metro-Goldwyn Mayer broke off a joint venture with CBS, that was agreed in 1980, to market videocassettes and videodiscs. This was publicly announced on June 18, 1982, where they announced CBS's 40-acre film and production facility in Studio City, California would be operated by both companies. In the process, CBS and Fox continued to independently supply programs for the home video market, while CBS/Fox supplied films from motion picture studios.

In 1985, CBS/Fox became the American licensee of BBC Video products. CBS/Fox brought large amounts of film libraries such as the United Artists films. The library brought consisted mainly of pre-MGM merger titles (although at the time, MGM holds the video rights to some pre-merger films that are not yet released on video), films from the James Bond and Rocky series, although the post-merger Bond and Rocky 1980s sequels were released by CBS/Fox as well, and some low profile post-merger films under license from MGM/UA. These UA films were later issued through MGM/UA Home Video (now, MGM Home Entertainment) starting in 1989 (although Fox would later release the post-1986 MGM library years later). CBS/Fox also secured rights from George Lucas for the video release of The Empire Strikes Back for $12 million on August 30, 1984. Lucas claimed the deal was to not allow the film to be broadcast on television.

In 1985, CBS and 20th Century Fox secured a financial package that saw both companies generate between $75 and $100 million. The deal also included the offering of bonds with the investment firm Drexel Burnham Lambert.

In 1986, CBS/Fox lost the home video rights to the a.a.p. library to MGM/UA Home Video. At the time, the a.a.p. and pre-May 1986 MGM film libraries were purchased by Ted Turner after its short-lived ownership of MGM/UA, which resulted in the formation of Turner Entertainment Co. In 1987, the company increased its rights from BBC Video after buying the rights to 600 broadcasts. When asked about how the agreement came to light, then-CBS/Fox president Leonard White said "The deal is timed to coincide with the BBC's 50th anniversary". Within a month of the announcement, CBS/Fox released a definitive line-up of films named "Five Star Collection IV" which included 28 films. Such films included: Revenge of the Nerds, Cat's Eye and Oxford Blues.

In 1989, CBS/Fox lost the home video rights to the Lorimar library to Warner Home Video, after Warner Communications (which merged with Time Inc. that year to form Time Warner) purchased Lorimar. In November of that year, the company filed a lawsuit against MGM/UA over a video distribution agreement that was broken. The claim was that CBS/Fox lost revenue after video releases ended up being films that did not perform well in cinemas while MGM/UA distributed higher-grossing films. The two companies were placed in a bad relationship since 1981 when MGM/UA brought United Artists which created its own video subsidiary. The case was settled on June 26, 1992, when both companies resolved their differences.

In 1990–91, CBS/Fox began releasing titles from the then bankrupt Media Home Entertainment. At the end of 1990, CBS/Fox reported they controlled 6.5% of the home video market and reported revenues of $249 million.

In 1990, a reorganization of the company was made, with most mainstream Fox titles being turned over to the new FoxVideo that appeared in 1991. CBS began releasing their product under the "CBS Video" name, with FoxVideo handling distribution. However, CBS/Fox remained active for distribution of BBC Video products and other non-CBS or Fox products, and their print logo was also used for FoxVideo's re-releases of pre-1990 Fox movies in tandem with the latter company's logo.

In 1992, ABC Sports and CBS/Fox agreed to a collaboration that allowed men's fragrance company Drakkar Noir to promote their products on a nationwide scale on television. The advertisements cost Drakkar Noir in excess of $1.3 million, which included footage from ABC's The Thrill of Victory and CBS/Fox's The Agony of Defeat.

In 1993, CBS/Fox broadened its appeal to include gay audiences with the release of The Lost Language of Cranes, a BBC production that was shown on PBS in 1992. Video rental stores took advantage of a gay and lesbian audience, which was a small demographic.

In 1995, CBS/Fox secured a 10-year agreement that would allow the company to distribute On Ice's Inc. production of Nutcracker on Ice that was aired by NBC on January 1, 1996.

Read more about this topic:  CBS/Fox Video, History

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Famous quotes containing the words venture and/or joint:

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