Access Entertainment has acquired James Packer’s stake in RatPac Entertainment, including its film, TV and documentary business, along with a major piece of the RatPac-Dune venture that co-finances films for Warner Bros. Pictures.
Brett Ratner, who founded RatPac with Packer in 2013, will retain his interest in RatPac Entertainment, and continue as CEO. He will also become co-chairman, alongside Danny Cohen, the president of Access Entertainment and former director of BBC Television.
Access Entertainment, which launched in May 2016, has quickly developed strategic partnerships with TV, film, theater and music businesses. Investments so far have included a premium scripted television financing venture with BBC Worldwide/Lookout Point, a 25-percent stake in the international TV business Bad Wolf and a film slate deal with House Productions.
The plans are for Access Entertainment to accelerate RatPac’s already growing TV business. The acquisition also marks a key move into Hollywood motion picture financing for Access Entertainment through its newly acquired interest in RatPac-Dune.
Len Blavatnik, the founder and chairman of Access Industries, said: “Warner Bros. is one of the great Hollywood Studios. I have great respect for their leadership and am delighted to be partnering with Kevin Tsujihara and the Studio alongside the unique talent of Brett Ratner. Together we will build on RatPac’s strategic partnership with Warner Bros.”
Ratner, CEO of RatPac Entertainment, said: “I am thrilled to be in partnership with Len and Danny. Len and I have shared the same vision and passion for movies, television and music over the years. Because of his experience and enthusiasm, RatPac Entertainment will be an even more formidable provider of quality entertainment worldwide.”
Kevin Tsujihara, chairman and CEO of Warner Bros., said: “Len has an incredible track record launching really successful business ventures, including Access Entertainment. We’re excited to continue our relationship with Brett and RatPac and look forward to working with Len, Danny and the entire Access team. I’d also like to thank James—he’s been a terrific partner the last three years, having worked with us on a number of key films, including Batman v Superman, Suicide Squad and The LEGO Batman Movie.”
Cohen, the president of Access Entertainment, commented: “I’m very excited to be in business with Brett Ratner, Kevin Tsujihara and Warner Bros. The RatPac development slate has great creative strength and we will be working hard to maximize all aspects of the business across development, financing and production.”