Centennial, CO -- National CineMedia, Inc. (NASDAQ: NCMI) (the "Company" or "NCM"), said today that after a thorough review of options, it has agreed with SV Holdco, LLC and Screenvision, LLC to terminate the Merger Agreement signed May 5, 2014, that would have combined NCM and Screenvision. The Company is the managing member and owner of 45.8% of National CineMedia, LLC (NCM LLC), the operator of the largest in-theatre digital media network in North America.

In November 2014, the Department of Justice filed suit seeking to block the merger. NCM and Screenvision together determined that the ongoing cost and distraction of the suit to their employees, advertisers and exhibitor partners could no longer be justified and that both companies would be better served pursuing their independent businesses as standalone companies.

"NCM has created a highly effective offering in the hyper-competitive video advertising marketplace through the power of our world-class entertainment content; premium video ratings; national reach; scalable, state-of-the-art content distribution technology; and integrated digital marketing products. While I am disappointed that our shareholders and our advertising clients and exhibitor partners will not realize the benefits of a merger with Screenvision, I remain confident in our ability to continue to innovate and build our business," said Kurt Hall, NCM's Chairman and CEO.

NCM's positive fourth quarter 2014 results were driven largely by growth in national advertising revenue and the success of its upfront strategy and the Company entered 2015 with solid momentum. NCM continues to see strong performance in its local and regional business and, at the same time, has made significant progress expanding its national client base. This success in expanding the client base combined with the successful 2014/2015 upfront campaign has resulted in current commitments that represent approximately 77% of the 2015 national advertising annual budget (versus 51% at this time in 2014 of actual 2014 results), indicating that the Company's network is being viewed favorably as marketers evaluate the impact of the changing media landscape.

NCM expects to continue to make progress executing its long-term strategy to expand its advertising client base by delivering improvements to its premium video network and upgrades to its distribution and inventory management technology. The Company remains confident that these enhancements will allow it to further strengthen its value proposition relative to other video advertising platforms. Combined with the changes in digital technology that are impacting the effectiveness of many traditional media platforms, NCM is well positioned to continue to gain share in the video advertising marketplace.

The termination of the Merger Agreement is effective upon the Company's payment of a $26.84 million termination payment, which the Company has agreed to make within the next 10 business days. This payment is $2 million lower than the reverse termination fee contemplated by the Merger Agreement. NCM LLC has agreed to indemnify the Company for the termination payment as well as other costs incurred in connection with the transaction. The Company and the founding member theatre circuits each will bear a pro rata portion of this fee based on their aggregate ownership percentages in NCM LLC. The total after tax cash cost for NCM, Inc. related to the proposed merger with Screenvision including the termination fee and all legal and other expenses is projected to be approximately $11 million.

Further, certain amendments to NCM LLC's senior secured credit facility that would have become effective upon a contribution of Screenvision to NCM LLC will be immediately and automatically revoked upon the termination of the Merger Agreement.

First Quarter and Full Year 2015 Outlook

The Company today also reaffirmed its first quarter and full year 2015 outlook. For the first quarter 2015, the Company continues to expect:

Total revenue to be in the range of $75.0 million to $78.0 million, up 7% to 11% year-over-year; and
Adjusted OIBDA to be in the range of $25.0 million to $28.0 million, up 11% to 24% compared with the first quarter of 2014.
For the full year 2015, based on the Company's visibility and current forecast, the Company continues to expect:

Total revenue to be in the range of $422.0 million to $432.0 million, up 7% to 10% year-over-year; and
Adjusted OIBDA in the range of $210.0 million to $220.0 million, up 5% to 10% compared with the full year 2014.
Adjusted OIBDA is a non-GAAP measure. See the tables at the end of this release for the reconciliations to the closest GAAP basis measurements.


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By Daniel Garris

Cinderella was off to a strong start this weekend with $67.88 million. Disney's well-received fairy tale adaptation opened on the high end of its lofty pre-release expectations (though it should be noted that the film was over-estimated by $2.17 million on Sunday). Cinderella also added some much needed life to what had been a slow start to the overall March box office. Without adjusting for ticket price inflation, Cinderella delivered the seventh largest debut ever for the month of March. The film opened just 2 percent below the $69.43 million start of last year's Maleficent, which was impressive given that unlike Maleficent, Cinderella didn't receive a bump from higher priced 3D admissions (though it did receive a bit of a bump from playing in IMAX locations).

Cinderella opened with $22.99 million on Friday (which included an estimated $2.3 million from evening shows on Thursday), increased 18 percent on Saturday to take in $27.06 million and declined 34 percent on Sunday to gross $17.83 million. That gave the film an opening weekend to Friday ratio of 2.95 to 1. Opening weekend business for Cinderella likely skewed higher than usual towards Friday for a family film due in part to some areas being on spring break and from the film skewing heavily towards female moviegoers (66 percent of the film's audience was female). The film's audience also skewed towards younger moviegoers (55 percent of the film's audience was 25 years and younger), with family audiences representing 66 percent of the film's overall audience.

Cinderella received a strong A rating on CinemaScore. That is a very good early sign for the film going forward, especially in combination with the film's strong critical reviews. However, in the short-term Cinderella will be facing major new competition next weekend from Lionsgate's The Divergent Series: Insurgent.

Warner's Run All Night opened in a distant second place with $11.01 million. The Liam Neeson led action thriller opened a bit below expectations. As the fourth Neeson-led action thriller in just over a year, Run All Night clearly had its potential limited by over-saturation. Run All Night likely also took a hit from male moviegoers waiting for both Warner's Get Hard and Universal's Furious 7 instead at this point. Run All Night opened 14 percent below the $12.76 million start of last year's A Walk Among the Tombstones, though going forward Run All Night may hold up better than A Walk Among the Tombstones did.

Run All Night started with $3.86 million on Friday (which included an estimated $455,000 from evening shows on Thursday), was up 16 percent on Saturday to take in $4.46 million and fell 39.5 percent on Sunday to gross $2.69 million. That placed the film's opening weekend to Friday ratio at 2.86 to 1. The audience breakdown for the film skewed heavily towards moviegoers over the age of 25 (86 percent) and slightly towards female moviegoers (52 percent). Run All Night received a healthy A- rating on CinemaScore, though positive word of mouth may not help the film all that much with Insurgent, Get Hard and Furious 7 all on the horizon.

It was an extremely tight race for places third through sixth this weekend, with third place and sixth place ultimately separated by just $528,820.

Fox's Kingsman: The Secret Service continued to hold up very nicely this weekend with a third place take of $6.21 million. The Matthew Vaughn directed graphic novel adaptation starring Colin Firth was up one spot and down just 25 percent from last weekend, as the film continues to be aided by both strong word of mouth and by lackluster direct competition. Kingsman: The Secret Service has grossed a stronger than expected $107.39 million through 31 days of release.

Warner's Focus placed in fourth with $5.74 million. The romantic heist film starring Will Smith and Margot Robbie was down two spots and a respectable 43 percent from last weekend. Focus has grossed $43.97 million in 17 days. That places the film 19 percent behind the $54.52 million 17-day take of 2013's After Earth, but that percentage gap will continue to close going forward.

Sony's CHAPPiE finished very closely behind Focus in fifth with $5.70 million. After leading the box office last weekend, the Neill Blomkamp directed sci-fi film was down four spots and a sharp 57 percent this weekend. In addition to poor critical reviews and mixed word of mouth, CHAPPiE also took a hit this weekend from losing IMAX screens to Cinderella. With a ten-day start of just $23.32 million, CHAPPiE is running a disappointing 58 percent behind the $56.00 million ten-day take of 2013's Elysium.

The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel placed in sixth with $5.69 million. The ensemble comedy sequel from Fox Searchlight was down three spots and just 33 percent from last weekend, though it should be noted that the film did expand into an additional 449 locations this weekend. The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel has grossed a very solid $18.05 million in ten days, which places it 24 percent behind the $23.69 million ten-day gross of last year's The Hundred-Foot Journey.

On the platform front, It Follows was off to a healthy start with $160,089 from four locations in New York and Los Angeles. That gave the critically acclaimed horror thriller from RADiUS-TWC a promising per-location average of $40,022 for the frame. It Follows will expand into additional locations next weekend.

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WASHINGTON D.C. -- "The Legend of Cinema Luncheon: A Salute to Clint Eastwood," will take place on Wednesday, April 22, 2015, it was announced today by Mitch Neuhauser, Managing Director of CinemaCon. CinemaCon, the official convention of The National Association of Theatre Owners (NATO), will be held April 20 - 23, 2015, at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas.

This year's lunch will feature a salute to Clint Eastwood, complete with a one-on-one discussion on his filmmaking process and passion for the moviegoing experience, moderated by Stephen Galloway, Executive Features Editor of The Hollywood Reporter. Eastwood will also be presented with this year's "Fandango Fan Choice Award"-an industry and CinemaCon tradition for nearly a decade-for his top-grossing 2014 film, "American Sniper." Nominated for an Oscar for Best Picture, Eastwood's 34th film as a director is the year's overwhelming fan favorite, as voted by the majority of moviegoers on Fandango. The award will be presented to Eastwood at the luncheon by Fandango President Paul Yanover.

"CinemaCon is deeply honored to host this luncheon to recognize a true legend, Mr. Clint Eastwood, for all he has done for the motion picture industry worldwide throughout his unprecedented career. To hear his thoughts on filmmaking and what the theatrical experience means to him is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and is what CinemaCon is all about," Neuhauser states.

Since its inception, Wednesdays at CinemaCon have been geared toward the filmmaking experience-being able to hear from incredible filmmakers on their passion for cinema has always been imperative to the convention. Past filmmakers who have been on hand for this annual CinemaCon event include Ang Lee, Martin Scorsese, James Cameron, Oliver Stone, Christopher Nolan, Sam Raimi, Guillermo del Toro, Jeffrey Katzenberg and George Lucas.

"Every year for CinemaCon, we survey our Fandango film fans, asking them to select their favorite movie of the year, and this year's choice was undeniably ‘American Sniper,'" a very special film that has been incredibly popular on Fandango and we're sure will be a favorite of film fans for many years to come," says Fandango President Paul Yanover. "We are excited to present the award to Mr. Eastwood."

Over the course of his illustrious career, Eastwood has received many lifetime achievement honors and has been acclaimed for his work as a director, producer and actor, including four Oscar wins for his work as a director and producer on the Best Picture winners "Million Dollar Baby" and "Unforgiven." His most recent film, "American Sniper," is the top-grossing film of 2014 and has grossed more than $500 million worldwide.


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By Alex Edghill

Monday Morning Update: Fast 7 was locked in a tight race for top spot this past week with the upstart Unfriended, managing to eek out a victory by less than .5% of a percent. As news of its plot, marketing, and promo material flood the worldwide web the film has been doing well across all forms of social media, and Facebook is no different. This is pretty remarkable when you think that over 55 million people have already liked the page, one would think it was already at saturation point but it keeps expanding. Harry Potter's eight record setting films drove that franchise to just over 76 million likes, a record in the film industry on Facebook, and one that the Furious franchise will have a shot at sometime during its 9th or 10th installment no doubt. Part 7 is set to be the biggest of them all, in part because they have been trending upwards over the recent releases and due to the fact that Paul Walker's passing in real life will likely bring out just about anyone who has seen any of the previous films to bid their farewell. This is truly a global film and as such it should explode as its release date approaches and after. 62 million plus likes by the end of the box office run is likely.

Unfriended went toe to toe with a giant worldwide heavy hitter this past week which was shifting into top marketing gear and almost came out on top. Of course its overall numbers are miniscule by comparison but this just further cements it as a breakout waiting to happen this April. Its now tracking way ahead of virtually every other horror breakout in the past five years (yes even Paranormal Activity), which is hugely impressive. Whether this hype will translate to box office dollars is up for debate as films targeting to teen demographic have been known to explode on social media and underperform at the box office as many are quick to point out. I'm less reserved and think that $20 million is in the bag here, with upside to $30+. That might be crazy numbers but with the type of buzz it is dragging its a can't miss hit at this point.

Facebook Top 5 Movies by Like Increase for the last week Ending Sunday March 15th

Rank Release Movie Likes Previous Change % Change
1 04/03/15 Furious 7 55,119,420 54,938,013 181,407 0.33%
2 04/17/15 Unfriended 684,215 503,050 181,165 36.01%
3 03/20/15 The Divergent Series: Insurgent 4,651,331 4,517,706 133,625 2.96%
4 09/25/15 Hotel Transylvania 2 8,895,546 8,795,491 100,055 1.14%
5 12/18/15 Star Wars: The Force Awakens 13,552,189 13,476,237 75,952 0.56%

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Please check the methodology page for information about our Twitter project or here for historic data.

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By Alex Edghill

Sunday Morning Update: Its not a common occurrence to see a film lead the weekly Twitter list for three out of four weeks but that is exactly what The Divergent Series: Insurgent managed over the past month leading up to its release. In fact the only reason it didn't lead all four weeks is that Avengers: Age Of Ultron's new trailer last week pushed it to #2. Now I will admit that traffic in general over the past month has been light (only Insurgent and Ultron have managed 100k+ tweet weeks) and despite all the big numbers and first places Insurgent is actually running just neck and neck with its predecessor Divergent. Over the same period before release Divergent had 209,466 tweets. Insurgent does have a lot of its buzz thanks to the first film so the fact that it is running so close in numbers to that film really leads me to think that we are not going to see a big opening bump (if at all) come next weekend.

Furious 7 has started its TV campaign and has mounted an impressive International marketing effort including actor-led intros for different channels. I have seen few other worldwide pushes as impressive as this over the last five years and I think regardless of how good or bad the movie ends up being that it is going to make a real push for $1 billion worldwide. Its come a long way from its underdog beginnings almost 15 years ago.

Paper Towns made its way into the top 5 as well thanks to news surfacing about its release (was pushed back a few weeks), and John Green (the author of the novel) released news about other adaptations in the works for his past novels. He also said that a first trailer would be on the way shortly. I'm anxious to see just how well the trailer is received because Green's The Fault In Our Stars was the most talked about movie of 2014 and as such Paper Towns has some big shoes to fill.

Twitter Top 10 Movies for the week of March 6th to March 12th

Date Movie Tweets Rank Change
3/20/15 The Divergent Series: Insurgent 226,948 1 (+1) 24.76%
5/01/15 Avengers: Age of Ultron 94,386 2 (-1) -77.41%
4/03/15 Furious 7 74,891 3 (-) 59.09%
7/24/15 Paper Towns 29,560 4 (+3) 58.45%
12/18/15 Star Wars: The Force Awakens 27,031 5 (+5) 104.24%

Subscribe to Box Office for more social media insights/coverage.

Please check the methodology page for information about our Twitter project or here for historic data.

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