Relativity files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

Ryan Kavanaugh’s US film and TV indie studio Relativity has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Ryan-Kavanaugh-Relativity[1]The bankruptcy filing covers the movie business and the TV operation, which is run by Tom Forman (below) and makes series including Catfish, but not the company’s sports division or its joint venture operation with Luc Besson’s EuropaCorp.

The bankruptcy filing also reveals the studio has over 1,000 creditors, has unpaid debts of over US$300 million and is carrying a total debt load of about US$1 billion.

Tom-Forman-RelativityIt has a pool of US$45 million ‘debtor in possession’ financing that it will use to continue operating through the Chapter 11 process.

“Relativity continues to pursue its mission as a next-generation global media company, and we remain firmly committed to our film and television businesses,” said Kavanaugh (pictured above).

“The actions we are announcing today will protect our valuable franchise and allow us to emerge as a stronger, more focused company.”

He added: “Our board and management team explored a variety of options to refinance Relativity’s debt, and we ultimately determined that the protection afforded by a court-supervised reorganisation process will provide additional time and structure to achieve our financial and strategic objectives.”

About 75 staff have been laid off in the immediate aftermath of the filing.

Toronto’s Catalyst Capital Group was thought to have put a deal together to rescue the troubled Hollywood studio, but that did not materialise.