Jason Blum and James Wan’s companies in advanced merger talks

Wan’s company would have a first-look production deal with Universal should there be a potential merger.

Jason Blum’s Blumhouse Productions and James Wan’s Atomic Monster are in advanced talks to join forces and join forces in what could potentially bring together two of the industry’s horror powerhouses.

Both Blum and Wan spoke to the New York Times on Wednesday about the possibility of a merger, discussing how they would be perfect artist-businessman counterparts if they both owned franchises or box-office hits like “Paranormal Activity” and “Get Out.” Blumhouse’s ending and the universes “The Conjuring” and “Saw” for Wan’s Atomic Monster.

While a deal is yet to be finalized and both parties are still in the early stages of talks, a person with knowledge of the talks told IndieWire that if signed, both Blumhouse and Atomic Monster would continue to operate on separate labels, but with Atomic Monster a first -Look to have deal with Universal Pictures. Wan’s company ended its first-look deal with Warner Bros. in June, while Blumhouse currently has a first-look deal with Universal that runs through summer 2024.

The move would theoretically allow any company to scale up its film production while giving Atomic Monster the freedom to use Blumhouse’s existing infrastructure. Wan went on to say he’s hopeful to expand into other areas like podcasts, gaming, live experiences and more.

The New York Times also noted that if closed, Wan would hold a significant interest in Blumhouse, while Blum would retain controlling interest in the company and Universal would be the third-highest shareholder.

Since 2004, Wan and Blumhouse have earned a combined $11.6 billion in box office as producers, with horror projects accounting for nearly $8.5 billion of that. When they merge, they will have a total of 15 major horror franchises to their name, including the Halloween movies, The Purge series, Happy Death Day, Insidious, and Blumhouse’s upcoming trilogy based on the original “Exorcist” movie.

Wan is also responsible for Blumhouse’s lively upcoming release, M3GAN, due out on January 6th. He co-wrote the story with Akela Cooper about a robot’s best friend gone berserk.

On the TV side, Atomic Monster’s scripted TV listings include “MacGyver” and Netflix’s genre series “Swamp Thing,” “I Know What You Did Last Summer,” and “Archive 81,” and they are expected to also entering the Unscripted space with multiple series in development. Blumhouse’s more successful series include The Jinx, The Loudest Voice, The Good Lord Bird, and The Thing About Pam.

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https://www.indiewire.com/2022/11/blumhouse-atomic-monster-early-merger-talks-2022-1234783311/ Jason Blum and James Wan’s companies in advanced merger talks

Lindsay Lowe

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