By Tambay A. Obenson
Byron Allen’s Entertainment Studios, Inc., which produces, distributes 38 TV programs worldwide, and owns eight 24-hour HD cable networks, has announced its acquisition of the Los Angeles-based independent film distribution company Freestyle Releasing.
Freestyle Releasing is a full-service, theatrical motion picture distribution company that specializes in representing independent films. Co-founded by Mark Borde and the late Susan Jackson, Freestyle Releasing distributes theatrical motion pictures, digital media content through Freestyle Digital Media, and also represents independent film and television producers through its producers representation division, Turtle’s Crossing.
Freestyle’s most successful film released theatrically to date is “God’s Not Dead” (2014), which had a domestic box office gross of over $60 million. Their most recent theatrical release is the faith-based film “Woodlawn.”
“We could not be more excited to have Byron Allen add Freestyle Releasing to his ever-growing media empire,” said Freestyle co-founder Mark Borde. “We’ve had numerous offers over the years, but now we’ve finally found the perfect buyer who shares our vision for distribution expansion on all platforms: theatrical motion pictures, broadcast syndication, cable television, VOD, and digital content. Our future just got much brighter.”
“Mark Borde and Susan Jackson have done a phenomenal job creating and building Freestyle, and we are 110 percent committed to enhancing their excellent legacy,” said Byron Allen, Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Entertainment Studios.
“Freestyle has a great management team, and with their unique output deal with Netflix, the company is very valuable and well-positioned to grab greater theatrical box office market share, and we will maximize this opportunity.”
“This is an historic moment in the film industry,” said Quincy Jones. “One of the best ways to address diversity in our industry is through finance and distribution, and Byron Allen has now taken that first major step, which is long overdue. I am very proud of Byron, and I hope he adopts me.”
For more information on Entertainment Studios, visit: www.es.tv.
And to learn more about Freestyle Releasing, go to www.freestylereleasing.com.
Allen is maybe taking a hint from fellow African American media mogul Robert Johnson, whose RLJ Entertainment owns a handful of entities, like indie film distributor Image Entertainment, which he bought in 2012.