The market for copyrights belonging to composers for film and TV continues to heat up.
Just yesterday (March 22), Multimedia Music, a company that specializes in catalogs of film and TV music rights, raised an additional $100 million investment bringing the company’s total funds raised to date to $200 million.
Last month, UK-born Cutting Edge Media Music (CEMM) secured $100 million in financing from a group of banks led by Pinnacle Financial Partners to boost its cash reserves to invest in music for film, television, video games and more.
That new $100 million raise came after a year during which the company invested $125 million, raised in an initial round, to acquire film and TV music rights.
Now, CEMM has announced the acquisition of what it says is a ‘major film music catalog’ – from UK-based media company First Score Music Ltd.
CEMM says that the acquisition gives it full master and publishing rights to more than 75 “premium” film scores.
Terms of the transaction were not disclosed, but a source tells MBW that the transaction was in the high seven figures.
The transaction includes master and publishing rights to a collection of film scores including the score for director Taika Waititi’s upcoming sports comedy-drama film Next Goal Wins starring Michael Fassbender, and the score for the upcoming animated version of George Orwell’s Animal Farm from Andy Serkis.
Next Goal Wins includes a score by Academy Award and Emmy-winner Michael Giacchino, who composed themes for Up, The Incredibles, The Batman and Lost.
These themes are just among the over “over 75 premium film scores that Cutting Edge is acquiring, expanding its catalog of media music.
“This purchase brings Cutting Edge Media Music closer to its long-term goal in becoming the pre-eminent media music publisher and services provider in the world.”
Philip Moross, Cutting Edge Group
“Imaginarium has a great creative and commercial relationship with Cutting Edge,” said Jonathan Cavendish of Imaginarium Productions, the producer of Serkis’ Animal Farm animation.
“It is incredibly important for us to have partners in the musical sphere who are as knowledgeable, creative and clever as Cutting Edge’s Philip Moross and Tara Finnegan.”
The deal will also see CEMM buying film scores by composers such as Carter Burwell, Christophe Beck, Hildur Guðnadóttir, Volker Bertelmann, John Debney, Benjamin Wallfisch, Andrew Lockington, David Newman, Rachel Portman, Mychael Danna, Craig Armstrong, David Buckley and Harald Kloser.
“This purchase brings Cutting Edge Media Music closer to its long-term goal in becoming the pre-eminent media music publisher and services provider in the world,” said Philip Moross, CEO and founder of Cutting Edge Group, CEMM’s parent company.
Cutting Edge Group COO Tara Finegan added: “Through CEMM and its divisions such as Lakeshore Records, CEMM can continue to invest in productions and provide a range of music services, including publishing the best original scores and releasing the best soundtracks.”
“We have been tracking the development of First Score Music for some time and are thrilled to bring this world class catalogue of independent film scores into the Cutting Edge Media Music portfolio.”
Tim Hegarty, Cutting Edge Group
“We have been tracking the development of First Score Music for some time and are thrilled to bring this world class catalogue of independent film scores into the Cutting Edge Media Music portfolio,” added Tim Hegarty, head of mergers and acquisitions for Cutting Edge Group, who represented CEMM in the transaction.
The acquisition marks CEMM’s latest investment since raising $100 million from a group of banks led by Pinnacle Financial Partners last month. In 2022, CEMM invested $125 million in buying film and TV music rights.
Nearly a month ago, the company agreed to form a strategic music venture with Village Roadshow Entertainment Group (VREG), covering the latter’s past and future music publishing assets, soundtrack album releases and music supervision services.
The deals come as music rights companies double down on investments in copyrights for film and TV scores.
Shortly after CEMM announced its funding round, Multimedia Music, which also operates in the space, said it closed an eight-figure deal to acquire the music publishing and music master rights from the entire film music library of STX Entertainment.
The transaction includes music for film titles like Bad Moms, The Gentlemen, Den of Thieves, Greenland and The Foreigner and music from composers including Hans Zimmer, Cliff Martinez, Marcelo Zarvos, Hauschke, Chris Lennertz, Andrew Lockington, Clinton Shorter and Nicholas Britell.
Music Business Worldwide