Magnolia Pictures Bows Streaming Service, Branded Channels on Sling TV

Magnolia Pictures July 10 announced that its streaming service, Magnolia Selects, and three branded genre-specific channels have launched on Sling TV — Dish Networks’ online TV platform.

The home entertainment distributor launched in 2001 by Mark Cuban and Todd Wagner’s 2029 Entertainment, offers critically acclaimed libraries of indie movies.

Magnolia channels “Warriors & Gangsters,” “DOX” and “Monsters & Nightmares,” offer a curated collection of action, documentaries and horror cult films. They are available to Sling subscribers for an additional $3 monthly per channel.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

Magnolia Selects is available for a $5 monthly surcharge.

“By teaming up with Sling TV, Magnolia Selects can continue to be the go-to destination for fans of independent film and premium content,” Eamonn Bowles, president of Magnolia Pictures, said in a statement. “We’ve found a new innovative way to ensure our subscribers have accessibility to our curated library of critically-acclaimed films through Sling TV’s flexible platform and personalized streaming service.”

Magnolia Selects titles include Oscar-winning documentary Man on Wire; Swedish horror film, Let the Right One In; Oscar-nominated documentary from Alex Gibney, Enron: The Smartest Guys in The Room and Andrew Jarecki’s true crime story, All Good Things.

Additional content include comedies Tucker & Dale vs Evil and Goon, starring Seann William Scott, alongside the martial arts masterpiece 13 Assassins from director Takashi Miike.

The “Warriors & Gangsters” channel features films such as Ong Bak, 13 Assassins, Kingdom of War and Troll Hunter.

“Monsters & Nightmares” channel titles include The Host, The ABC’s of Death and Survival of the Dead, while “DOX” documentaries and docuseries include Food Inc., The Wolfpack, Iris and Best of Enemies.

Mark Cuban Sells Netflix-Friendly Landmark Theatres

Landmark Theatres, the Los Angeles-based independent exhibitor with 252 screens in 27 markets nationwide, Dec. 4 disclosed it has been acquired by the Cohen Media Group (CMG) for an undisclosed amount.

Co-owned since 2003 by Mark Cuban (“The Shark Tank” and owner of the NBA’s Dallas Mavericks) and Todd Wagner, Landmark has pushed indie film distribution and wasn’t afraid to partner with subscription ticket service MoviePass or screen Netflix movies – including recent release Roma– day-and-date with their global streaming debut.

CMG, formed in 2008 by real estate developer Charles Cohen – a film buff and executive producer on Oscar-nominated Frozen River, starring Melissa Leo, the company has restored hundreds of films, and distributes titles via Amazon’s Cohen Media Channel and on disc through Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.

“Anyone who knows Charles knows he is an avid lover of art and cinema, and this deal to purchase Landmark serves so many of his true passions and interests,” Landmark CEO Ted Mundorff said in a statement. “By acquiring our chain, he as supercharged and scaled his distribution footprint in the arthouse sector.”

Mundorff reportedly will remain CEO of Landmark along with the chain’s management going forward.

“As we complete the sale, we expect the transition between owners to be smooth and seamless with little or no impact to customers,” Wagner and Cuban said in a statement.




Amazon Eyeing Mark Cuban’s Landmark Theatres

Amazon reportedly is among several companies looking to acquire Landmark Theatres, the indie exhibitor co-owned by “Shark Tank” veteran and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban and his business partner Todd Wagner.

Bloomberg, citing sources familiar with the situation, said Amazon is interested in Landmark as the ecommerce behemoth ventures further into brick-and-mortar businesses. Any deal would be relatively small compared to Amazon’s $13.7 billion acquisition of Los Angeles-based Whole Foods last year.

Landmark operates 50 theaters with 250 screens in 27 markets, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Philadelphia, Chicago, New York and Dallas.

The chain last year became one of the few high-profile exhibitors to ink a revenue-sharing agreement with ticket subscription service MoviePass.

With Amazon operating a proprietary studio, ownership of an exhibition venue would technically be in violation of the 70-year-old Paramount Pictures consent decrees, which prohibits studios from owning theaters.

The Justice Department antitrust division earlier this month announced it would revisit the rulings due to changes in the distribution of entertainment.

“The Paramount decrees have been on the books with no sunset provisions since 1949,” Makan Delrahim, head of the Justice Department’s antitrust unit, said in an Aug. 2 statement. “It is high time that these and other legacy judgments are examined to determine whether they still serve to protect competition.”

Delrahim is also responsible for the antitrust litigation filed against the ATT/Time Warner merger, in which a federal judge sided against the government’s claim the merger was anti-consumer. The decision is under appeal.


Mark Cuban Accepting MoviePass Fits Maverick Role

NEWS ANALYSIS – Billionaire Mark Cuban is as much reality TV showman as digital pioneer, self-help author, owner of the Dallas Mavericks NBA franchise, AXS TV network and Magnolia Pictures, among other hats.

When Cuban talks, people listen. As a celebrity TV judge on “Shark Tank,” contestants are often grateful just to hear Cuban’s input on their entrepreneurial dreams – even if he has no financial interest backing them or advice to offer. Cuban makes no secret his affection for upstart techies looking to disrupt the status quo.

Like movie ticket subscription service MoviePass, which is now offering (for a limited time) daily access to a theatrical screening for a $6.95 monthly fee. The strategy — however fiscally illogical — has irked major theater chains, despite increasing moviegoing foot traffic.

MoviePass is spearheaded by CEO Mitch Lowe, a longtime industry disruptor who cut his teeth helping Netflix and later Redbox reinvent the home video market.

When Cuban agreed to give MoviePass a percentage of ticket sales from his Landmark Theatres chain, it was much more than revenue-sharing from 255 screens across 53 theaters in 27 markets nationwide. It was subtle affirmation without Lowe pitching five “Shark Tank” judges.

“There is no better place to watch a movie than Landmark and now MoviePass customers will be able to enjoy all of our theaters,” Cuban said in a statement.

Landmark, which Cuban co-owns with Todd Wagner, is no stranger to bucking distribution norms. The chain was one of the first to screen (independent) movies concurrent with their release in retail channels.

Cuban infamously blogged in 2005 that consumers should have access to Hollywood movies, “How they want it, when they want it, where they want it.”

Cuban released faith-based drama, The War Within, simultaneously on Landmark screens and HDNet (now AXS TV).

In 2008, he experimented screening a Mavericks game in 3D at a Landmark/Magnolia theater in Dallas.

Last year, Landmark opened the first new theater in midtown Manhattan in 15 years: a 30,000-square-foot complex with eight screens featuring wall-to-wall screens, laser projection and oversized lounge chairs for viewers.

“We are creating a new destination for cinema,” Ted Mundorff, president of Landmark Theatres, said in a statement.

Cuban himself upended conventional wisdom during the dot-com bubble in 1999 selling (with Wagner) upstart Internet-radio platform,, to Yahoo for $5.7 billion in stock – or reportedly more than $10,000 per subscriber. Cuban shortly sold his Yahoo stock, netting $1 billion at the age of 41.

Yahoo shut down in 2002. Cuban now markets “three-comma” T-shirts in support of the entrepreneurial spirit – and his fiscal legacy.