Official Press Release
SANTA MONICA, CA, and VANCOUVER, BC, September 16, 2004 - THE PUNISHER, the hit theatrical film released on DVD and video by Lions Gate Home Entertainment, the home video production and distribution arm of Lions Gate Entertainment (NYSE and TSX: LGF), reigned supreme among this week's new DVD releases, selling nearly two million units in its first week. Co-produced by Lions Gate Entertainment and Marvel Studios, THE PUNISHER is the eighth consecutive number one home video release for a film based on a Marvel Comics character. It is also the fastest-selling theatrical DVD release in Lions Gate history. THE PUNISHER, released by Lions Gate and Marvel in April, grossed $34 million in domestic box office.
Lions Gate is also establishing a powerful foundation for its next major video release, OPEN WATER, later in the fall. After scoring $30 million in North American theatrical box office to date, OPEN WATER debuted at number one in the U.K., garnering an estimated $3.6 million at the box office in its first three days of release.
"It's been a good week for Lions Gate," said Steve Beeks, President of Lions Gate Entertainment Inc. "We expected THE PUNISHER to capture the imaginations of DVD lovers. With a wonderful story, top-notch cast and the incredible devotion of the Marvel fan base, it had all the ingredients to achieve this type of success. Similarly, the continued box office success of OPEN WATER makes us equally confident that this movie will also explode when it is released on home video later this fall."
Beeks also used the opportunity to reaffirm previous guidance on revenue, free cash flow and EBITDA for fiscal 2005. Lions Gate is also expecting a swing to positive EBITDA for the fiscal second quarter ending September 30.
Lions Gate Entertainment is the premier independent producer and distributor of motion pictures, television programming, home entertainment, family entertainment and video-on-demand content. Its prestigious and prolific library of approximately 8000 titles is one of the largest in the entertainment industry. The Lions Gate brand name is synonymous with original, daring, quality entertainment in markets around the globe.
With a library of over 4,700 proprietary characters, Marvel Enterprises, Inc. (NYSE: MVL) is one of the world's most prominent character-based entertainment companies. Marvel's operations are focused in four areas: entertainment (Marvel Studios), licensing, comic book publishing and toys (Toy Biz). Marvel facilitates the creation of entertainment projects, including feature films, DVD/home video, video games and television based on its characters and also licenses its characters for use in a wide range of consumer products and services including apparel, collectibles, snack foods and promotions. Marvel's characters and plot lines are created by its comic book division, which continues to expand its leadership position in the U.S. and worldwide while also serving as an invaluable source of intellectual property.