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Nelson Entertainment was a Los Angeles-based film production and home video distribution company, a subsidiary of Nelson Holdings International Ltd., a Vancouver, Canada, holding company formed in 1985 by British film producer Barry Spikings and Richard Northcott, a British financier who amassed his fortune from a chain of hardware and furniture stores.[1] Nelson later acquired distribution rights to a majority of Embassy titles after purchasing its home video division. Sometime in August 1987, Embassy Home Entertainment was renamed Nelson Entertainment,[2] but retained the earlier brand for sell-through products.[3] Nelson then financed a deal with Castle Rock Entertainment to co-produce their films, and in addition handle the international distribution rights. In September 1988, Orion Home Video took over sales and marketing for Nelson; in addition, Orion Pictures would later theatrically distribute a few of Nelson's titles.[4] By February 1989, Orion was the official home video distributor of Nelson product.[5]

Nelson Entertainment
Subsidiary of Nelson Holdings International, Ltd.
home video
FateRenamed Sultan Entertainment and acquired by New Line Cinema, later by Crédit Lyonnais, assets currently owned by MGM
PredecessorEmbassy Home Entertainment
SuccessorNew Line Cinema (1992-1994)
Epic Productions (1994-1997)
Orion Pictures (1997-present)
FoundersBarry Spikings
Richard Northcott
HeadquartersLos Angeles, California, United States
Area served
Key people
Barry Spikings
Richard Northcott
ProductsMotion pictures
ParentNelson Holdings International, Ltd. (1986-1991)
(New Line Cinema) (1991)

In 1991, Nelson Entertainment sold its home video division to New Line Cinema and it was rebranded as New Line Home Video.[6] The company was later renamed Sultan Entertainment and was acquired by New Line, who then later took over the rights to the library.[7] By 1994, Nelson had been acquired by Crédit Lyonnais' Consortium de réalisation and merged into Epic Productions. CDR sold the Epic film library to PolyGram Filmed Entertainment in 1997,[8] then Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer acquired PolyGram's pre-April 1996 library in June 1997.[9] Therefore, MGM now owns most of the Nelson Entertainment library with the copyrights being held by Orion Pictures. Due to a previous agreement with Viacom Enterprises, Paramount Pictures via Trifecta Entertainment and Media holds the television rights to the Nelson library.



  1. ^ Coke Will Sell Embassy Unit for $85 Million : Nelson Entertainment Gets Co-Production Deal
  2. ^ Billboard (August 29, 1987). Embassy Logo Changed to Nelson (PDF). New York: Billboard Publications. p. 57.
  3. ^ McCullaugh, Jim (January 16, 1988). "Nelson Steps Up Sell-Through Push" (PDF). Billboard.
  4. ^ Stewart, Al (August 20, 1988). "Orion To Handle Sales Of Nelson Titles As Of Sept" (PDF). Billboard.
  5. ^
  6. ^ |format=TXT |title=NIGHTMARES, TURTLES AND PROFITS | |accessdate=2019-05-03
  8. ^
  9. ^

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