It seems strange that the Hollywood studio responsible for such phenomenally successful franchises as “The Lord of the Rings’, “Austin Powers’ and “Nightmare on Elm Street’ should be forced to downsize. Owner Time Warner has announced that New Line will be merged into Warner Bros. Hundreds of the 600 employees at New Line will lose their jobs as a result, including CEOs Boby Shaye and Michael Lynne.
New Line had been in existence for 40 years and was also the producer of Gavin Hood’s latest film, “Rendition’.
According the Time Warner annoucement, the New Line banner will still exist but the company will no longer have the power to greenlight, market or distribute films. The Los Angeles Times attributes this latest move to New Line’s recent “slew of costly flops’, including the huge budget “The Golden Compass’.
New Line’s fate mirrors that of other independent studios over the last three years. In that time Steven Spielberg’s DreamWorks was bought by Viacom Inc; The Weinstein’s Miramax Films became part of Walt Disney Co and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) was purchased by a big consortium including Sony Pictures. (Source: Studio Briefing)