Castle Rock Entertainment, which was co-founded by Oscar-nominated filmmaker Rob Reiner, is relaunching its feature division with a $175M film fund under which the studio will develop, produce and finance quality movies for global audiences.
Reiner will continue on as Castle Rock CEO, with Michele Reiner and Matthew George serving as Co-Presidents. Castle Rock’s film fund is backed by equity investors and top-tier entertainment banks. David Oliver of CIT Bank, N.A, which will act as administrative agent, structured the senior debt facility with Daisy Stall of California Bank &Trust. Castle Rock will have a first-look deal at Warner Bros. on theatrical content, which has long been its home, in addition to their existing deal with Castle Rock television productions.
Reiner co-founded the company in 1987, with Martin Shafer, Andrew Scheinman, Glenn Padnick and Alan Horn. Castle Rock has produced over 125 movies including When Harry Met Sally, A Few Good Men, In the Line of Fire, City Slickers, Miss Congeniality, The American President and The Shawshank Redemption, as well as one of the most lucrative and successful comedy series of all-time, Seinfeld.
Additional Castle Rock hires include: Hernan Narea , who joins the company as CFO, following his tenure as Senior Partner at Banksville Partners LLC and Managing Director/Principal of JPMorgan Chase’s securities subsidiary in New York; Courtney Shepard as the SVP of Development who segues from her role as the Head of Development post at Savvy Media Holdings; Michelle Goldfine, who will be promoted to VP of Development from the Director of Development role she previously held at Castle Rock Television; and T.J. Bryson as a Development Executive.
George previously collaborated with Reiner on the biopic LBJ and, together with Rob and Michele Reiner, produced Shock and Awe, which George also produced and financed under his Savvy Media Holdings banner. George’s credits also include acclaimed films such as Wind River starring Jeremy Renner and A Private War starring Rosamund Pike.
“I couldn’t be more thrilled,” said Reiner. “The Castle Rock lighthouse has always signaled a safe harbor for the creative community. With this relaunch, we will be able to continue the tradition of providing an environment for filmmakers to do their best work.”
George said: “Rob and his partners built Castle Rock into one of the most amazing brands in entertainment history. I look forward to working with Rob, Michele and our talented team of executives and creatives to build upon that legacy of making great films that impact the next generation.”
The deal was negotiated by Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP for Castle Rock Entertainment, Latham & Watkins and Cohen Gardner LLP for the private equity investors and O’Melveny & Myers LLP repping the lender syndicate.