2929 Entertainment

2929 Entertainment, LLC. is an American integrated media and entertainment co-founded by billionaire entrepreneurs Todd Wagner and Mark Cuban. 2929 maintains companies and interests across several industries including entertainment development and packaging, film and television production and distribution, digital and broadcast syndication, theatrical exhibition and home entertainment.

2929 Entertainment, LLC
TypePrivate
IndustryMovies, Television, Home entertainment, Home video, Movie theaters
Founded2002; 19 years ago (2002)
FounderTodd Wagner
Mark Cuban
Headquarters
Key people
Todd Wagner (CEO)
Mark Cuban (Co-Founder)
Schuyler Hansen, Managing Director
Divisions2929 Productions
Magnolia Pictures
Spotlight Cinema Networks
Truly Indie
AXS TV (co-owner)
Rysher Entertainment
HDNet Films
HDNet Movies
Landmark Theatres (sold to Cohen Media Group in 2018)
Website2929entertainment.com

2929 Entertainment has offices in Los Angeles, New York, and Dallas. Wagner and Cuban co-own 2929 with Sky Hansen serving as Managing Director.

HistoryEdit

2929 Entertainment made several strategic acquisitions to assure that releases could be made available to any audience across a variety of platforms simultaneously. Wagner says that, "ready availability of such infrastructure would be an operating advantage to both the circuit and the production company."[1] Some titles would even see DVD releases alongside theatrical openings as early as 2007, through an early partnership with Netflix.[2]

An extensive catalogue of television and film rights were acquired with Rysher Entertainment in 2001, and 2929 would co-produce a newer version of Star Search which premiered in January 2003 on CBS (the original Star Search aired from 1983 to 1995).

Variety praised 2929 as a "pioneer" for its simultaneous theatrical and cable television release of Steven Soderbergh's Bubble in 2006.[2] Bubble would be the first of several films with concurrent releases in theaters and through 2929's cable channel HDNet. At the time, this move was controversial as most films are released in different formats on a staggered schedule, giving each channel an exclusive window. Exhibitors were especially timorous, as many feared that they would eventually lose their exclusive release windows for more mainstream films.

OperationsEdit

Production CompaniesEdit

2929 Entertainment develops original feature and series through its production company 2929 Productions, and formerly through HDNet Films.

2929 Productions, LLCEdit

 
The company's main logo.

2929 Productions, LLC. was co-founded by Wagner and Cuban in 2003. The film and television studio selectively finances and develops feature films and series, often through partnerships with industry creators or entertainment companies.[3]

2929 Productions is headed by Haley Jones.[4] Previous studio leadership has included Ben Cosgrove (formerly of Paramount and Section Eight)[5] and Marc Butan (MadRiver Pictures and formerly Lionsgate).

Godsend, Criminal and The Jacket were among of the studio's first projects, co-produced and co-financed with Steven Soderbergh and George Clooney's Section Eight Productions. After his work on Godsend, Marc Butan was offered studio head at 2929 leading him to exit an EVP role at Lionsgate.[6]

In 2006, 2929 Productions released Good Night, And Good Luck. with Warner Independent. The film uses a mix of archival footage and contemporary production to tell the story of the famed wartime reporter Edward Murrow (George Clooney) and his historic "See it Now" broadcast criticizing Senator Joseph McCarthy and the Red Scare. To mitigate risks that could arise with a black-and-white feature film, Wagner engaged Jeff Skoll and his company Participant Media to produce Good Night. And Good Luck, which grossed over $30 million (USA) and was nominated for six Academy Awards, including Best Picture.


2929 Productions
Year Film Director Release date
2002 Searching for Debra Winger Rosanna Arquette July 13, 2002
2004 Godsend Nick Hamm April 30, 2004
Criminal Gregory Jacobs September 10, 2004
2005 The Jacket John Maybury January 23, 2005 (Sundance)/March 4, 2005
Good Night, and Good Luck George Clooney September 1, 2005 (VIFF)/October 7, 2005 (United States)
2006 Akeelah and the Bee Doug Atchison March 16, 2006 (CIFF)/April 28, 2006 (United States)
Turistas John Stockwell December 1, 2006
Black Christmas Glen Morgan December 15, 2006 (United Kingdom)/December 19, 2006 (TCL Chinese Theatre)/December 25, 2006 (United States)
2007 The Ex Jesse Peretz May 11, 2007
We Own the Night James Gray May 25, 2007 (Cannes)/October 12, 2007 (United States)
2008 The Life Before Her Eyes Vadim Perelman September 8, 2007 (TIFF)/April 18, 2008
What Just Happened Barry Levinson January 19, 2008 (Sundance)/May 25, 2008 (Cannes)/October 17, 2008 (United States)
2009 Two Lovers James Gray May 19, 2008 (Cannes Film Festival)/February 13, 2009 (United States)
The Girlfriend Experience Steven Soderbergh January 20, 2009 (Sundance)/May 22, 2009 (United States)
The Burning Plain Guillermo Arriaga August 29, 2008 (Venice International Film Festival)/September 18, 2009 (United States)
The Road John Hillcoat September 3, 2009 (VIFF)/September 13, 2009 (TIFF)/November 25, 2009 (United States)
2012 Deadfall Stefan Ruzowitzky April 22, 2012 (Tribeca Film Festival)/December 7, 2012 (United States)
2015 Serena Susanne Bier October 13, 2014 (BFI London Film Festival)/November 12, 2014 (France)/March 27, 2015 (United States)
2017 2:22 Paul Currie June 30, 2017
Permanent Colette Burson September 30, 2017 (Edmonton)
2018 Please Stand By Ben Lewin October 27, 2017 (Austin)/January 26, 2018 (United States)
The China Hustle Jed Rothstein March 20, 2018

HDNet FilmsEdit

HDNet Films produced lower budget movies with a focus on creating compelling content in high definition. To promote the relatively new distribution of HD video on demand in 2007, HDNet offered pay-per-view access to new films only several days after their theatrical releases.[7]

HDNet Films
Year Film Director Release date
2005 Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room Alex Gibney April 22, 2005
The War Within Joseph Castelo September 30, 2005
2006 Bubble Steven Soderbergh September 3, 2005 (Venice Film Festival)/January 27, 2006 (United States)
S&Man J. T. Petty March 10, 2006 (SXSW Film Festival)
Herbie Hancock: Possibilities Doug Biro & Jon Fine April 4, 2006
One Last Thing... Alex Steyermark September 12, 2005 (TIFF)/May 5, 2006 (United States)
The Architect Matt Tauber April 26, 2006
2007 Diggers Katherine Dieckmann March 30, 2007 (USA)
Fay Grim Hal Hartley September 11, 2006 (TIFF)/May 18, 2007 (United States)
Broken English Zoe Cassavetes January 20, 2007 (Sundance)/June 22, 2007 (United States)
Mr. Untouchable Marc Levin October 26, 2007
Redacted Brian De Palma August 31, 2007 (Venice Film Festival)/November 16, 2007 (United States)
2008 Surfwise Doug Pray September 11, 2007 (TIFF)/May 9, 2008 (USA)
Quid Pro Quo Carlos Brooks June 13, 2008
Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson Alex Gibney January 20, 2008 (Sundance)
2009 American Swing Jon Hart & Mathew Kaufman September 5, 2008 (TIFF)/March 27, 2009 (USA)
2010 And Everything Is Going Fine Steven Soderbergh January 23, 2010 (Slamdance)
2011 Rejoice and Shout (Documentary) Don McGlynn June 3, 2011

DistributionEdit

Originally formed in 2001 by Bill Banowsky and Eamonn Bowles, Magnolia Pictures is the home entertainment and theatrical distribution subsidiary of 2929. In November 2005 the company created Magnolia Home Entertainment to release its films over home video, with its first release being Alex Gibney's acclaimed doc, Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room.[8] It is headed by entertainment industry vet and former head of home entertainment for Miramax, Randy Wells. Magnolia Pictures also provides its content through a curated streaming service, Magnolia Selects.

2929 also launched Truly Indie, an "innovative distribution program" for independent filmmakers.

TelevisionEdit

2929 holds a significant interest in AXS TV, which Cuban originally co-founded in 2001 as the all-high definition cable channel HDNet (through AXS TV LLC, formerly HDNet, LLC). HDNet Movies, a companion channel, shows movies in high definition. 2929 also owned Rysher Entertainment, a television syndication distributor with an extensive library of titles and syndication rights to TV shows like Hogan's Heroes, Sex and the City and Star Search.[6] Rysher was later acquired by an investment company through Lakeshore Entertainment.

Former operationsEdit

Theatrical exhibitionEdit

2929 acquired Landmark Theatres September 24, 2003. The chain was originally founded by Kim Jorgensen in 1974 and specialized in independent and foreign films.[9] On December 4, 2018 the announcement was made that Landmark Theatres was sold to the Cohen Media Group, "a buyer who is passionate about independent cinema and who truly understands this market."[10]

2929 maintains an interest in Spotlight Cinema Networks, a cinema advertising company.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ DiOrio, Carl (2003-09-24). "Wagner, Cuban buy Landmark circuit". Variety. Retrieved 2019-01-17.
  2. ^ a b Mohr, Ian (2007-04-06). "Independent windows shrinking". Variety. Retrieved 2019-01-17.
  3. ^ "About Us - 2929 Entertainment - 2929 Productions". Retrieved January 8, 2018.
  4. ^ "Haley Jones | LinkedIn". LinkedIn. Retrieved 24 June 2020.
  5. ^ Gardner, Chris; McClintock, Pamela (2006-02-10). "Par plucks Cosgrove". Variety. Retrieved 2019-01-09.
  6. ^ a b Fleming, Michael (2004-02-17). "Butan new bigwig at 2929 Prods". Variety. Retrieved 2017-12-10.
  7. ^ "Mark Cuban Backed De Palma's 'Redacted' to Promote New Movie Distribution Business". NewsBusters. Retrieved 2019-01-10.
  8. ^ Brooks, Brian (2005-11-05). "Magnolia Pictures Launches Home Entertainment Division". IndieWire. Retrieved 2017-12-11.
  9. ^ "Mark Cuban's Landmark Theatres Hit With Antitrust Lawsuit". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2017-12-11.
  10. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (2018-12-04). "Cohen Media Group Acquires Landmark Theatres From Wagner/Cuban Companies". Deadline. Retrieved 2019-01-09.

External linksEdit