Spyglass Media Group

Spyglass Entertainment Holdings, LLC
Spyglass Media Group
Spyglass Entertainment (1998–2019)
PredecessorCaravan Pictures
FounderGary Barber
Roger Birnbaum
Defunct2012 Edit this on Wikidata
HeadquartersCentury City[1], ,
Key people
Gary Barber (Chair & CEO)[1]
Lauren Whitney (president, TV)[2]
ProductsMotion pictures

Spyglass Media Group, formerly Spyglass Entertainment (officially Spyglass Entertainment Holdings, LLC), is an American film production company founded by Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum in 1998.


Spyglass Entertainment

In August 1998, Gary Barber, former vice chairman and COO of Morgan Creek Productions and Roger Birnbaum, co-founder and former head of Caravan Pictures, founded Spyglass Entertainment. The startup company signed a five-year distribution agreement with Disney, which took an equity stake. Birnbaum previously left Caravan at the prompting of then–Disney studio chief Joe Roth; with Disney cutting its yearly production output, Roth recommended forming a self-financing production firm similar to New Regency Productions. After Caravan's remaining three films were released, it went inactive. Its slate of movie projects and an initial financial advance of $10 million to $20 million against future overages were also contributed by Disney.[3] Spyglass's operations were formed and based at the Walt Disney Studios. In October 1998, European media conglomerates Kirch Group and Mediaset invested in theatrical, video and television distribution rights to between 15 and 25 films in Germany, Italy, Spain, Poland and the former Soviet Union for over five years.[4] M. Night Shyamalan's The Sixth Sense (released 1999) was Spyglass' first film, collecting $661 million at the box office worldwide.[5]

By May 2000, Disney took a 10% equity stake in Spyglass, along with Svensk Filmindustri of Scandinavia and Lusomundo of Portugal.[6][7] In March 2003, Spyglass Entertainment agreed to a four-year distribution output deal with Village Roadshow for Australia, New Zealand and Greece.[8]

In December 2003, Spyglass ended its deal with Disney and agreed to a four-year first-look non-exclusive co-financing and production deal with DreamWorks. This deal was never finalized and the relationship was not working well. Thus in September 2003, Spyglass instead made a similar deal with Sony Pictures. Spyglass did not move to the Sony lot, but to Murdoch Plaza in Westwood, Los Angeles.[5]

On December 20, 2010, Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum became co-chairmen and CEOs of the holding company of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, which had at that time recently emerged from bankruptcy. The original plan had the Spyglass library being added to MGM, but it was later removed from the plan.[9]

Spyglass Media Group

On March 13, 2019, Barber and Lantern Entertainment revived the company as Spyglass Media Group, bringing in Eagle Pictures and Cineworld as investors. Lantern made a majority investment and also transferred its film library to the new Spyglass. Barber owns the Spyglass trademark and the sequel and remake rights to the old Spyglass' library, which he has contributed. The company plans to produce content for all platforms.[1][10] Spyglass closed the former Lantern Entertainment/TWC office in New York City while laying off 15 staff members across divisions.[11] On April 1, 2019, Lauren Whitney, the president of television for Miramax, took on the same position for Spyglass.[2]

In March 2019, Eagle Pictures and Cineworld invested in Spyglass Media Group.[12] The next month, Warner Bros. bought an equity stake in Spyglass, which signed a first-look deal with the studio.[13]

Foreign distributor

Production filmography





  1. ^ a b c d Lang, Brent (March 13, 2019). "Gary Barber Teams With Lantern Entertainment to Launch Spyglass Media Group". Variety. Retrieved March 13, 2019.
  2. ^ a b Otterson, Joe; Otterson, Joe (March 25, 2019). "Miramax President of TV Lauren Whitney Exits to Join Spyglass Media Group". Variety. Retrieved March 28, 2019.
  3. ^ Eller, Clauida (August 21, 1998). "Spyglass Offers Disney Lower-Risk Deals". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
  4. ^ Mattzer, Marla (October 29, 1998). "European Firms to Invest in Spyglass". Los Angeles Times. p. C4. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
  5. ^ a b Dunkley, Cathy; Brodesser, Claude (September 23, 2003). "Spyglass splits". Variety. Retrieved March 28, 2019.
  6. ^ Eller, Claudia (May 23, 2000). "Spyglass Hopes for More Good 'Sense' in Future Projects". Los Angeles Times. p. C1. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
  7. ^ Eller, Claudia (December 10, 2002). "Spyglass Signs Deal With DreamWorks". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
  8. ^ a b Dunkley, Cathy (March 7, 2003). "Roadshow taking Spyglass pix to Oz". Variety. Retrieved March 28, 2019.
  9. ^ McNary, Dave (20 December 2010). "MGM restructuring becomes official, Studio completes restructuring with $500 million in financing". Variety. Retrieved 10 April 2019.
  10. ^ Kilday, Gregg (March 13, 2019). "Gary Barber's Spyglass Media Group Takes Control of Former Weinstein Co. Assets". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 19, 2019.
  11. ^ Friedman, Ryan (March 20, 2019). "Gary Barber's Spyglass Media Group Lays Off 15, Closes Lantern Entertainment's NYC Office (Exclusive)". WrapPRO. Retrieved March 22, 2019.
  12. ^ Kay2019-03-13T20:50:00+00:00, Jeremy. "Cineworld, Eagle Pictures strategic partners in Spyglass Media Group venture". Screen. Retrieved 2019-04-26.
  13. ^ Lang, Brent (April 16, 2019). "Warner Bros. Invests in Spyglass Media". Variety. Retrieved April 18, 2019.
  14. ^ "Leap Year (2010)". AFI Catalog of Feature Films. Retrieved May 31, 2018.
  15. ^ Rechtshaffen, Michael (October 14, 2010). "Get Him to the Greek – Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 31, 2018.
  16. ^ "Dinner for Schmucks (2010)". AFI Catalog of Feature Films. Retrieved May 31, 2018.
  17. ^ McCarthy, Todd (December 8, 2010). "Todd McCarthy's Review of 'The Tourist' With Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 31, 2018.
  18. ^ McCarthy, Todd (January 16, 2011). "Film Review: 'No Strings Attached' Is Cutesy, Nowhere Near Hot Enough". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 31, 2018.
  19. ^ "Footloose (2011)". AFI Catalog of Feature Films. Retrieved May 31, 2018.
  20. ^ "The Vow (2012)". AFI Catalog of Feature Films. Retrieved May 31, 2018.

External links