Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc., also known as Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures and abbreviated as MGM, is an American film and television production and distribution company owned by Amazon through MGM Holdings, founded on April 17, 1924 and based in Beverly Hills, California.
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|Founded||April 17, 1924|
|Jennifer Salke (CEO)|
MGM was formed by Marcus Loew by combining Metro Pictures, Goldwyn Pictures, and Louis B. Mayer Pictures into one company. It hired a number of well known actors as contract players—its slogan was "more stars than there are in heaven"—and soon became Hollywood's most prestigious film studio, producing popular musical films and winning many Academy Awards. MGM also owned film studios, movie lots, movie theaters and technical production facilities. Its most prosperous era, from 1926 to 1959, was bracketed by two productions of Ben Hur. After that, it divested itself of the Loews movie theater chain, and, in the 1960s, diversified into television production.
In 1969, Kirk Kerkorian bought 40% of MGM and dramatically changed the company. He hired new management, reduced the studio's output to about five films per year, and diversified its products, creating MGM Resorts International and a Las Vegas-based hotel and casino company (which it later divested in the 1980s). In 1980, the studio acquired United Artists. Kerkorian sold the entire company to Ted Turner in 1986, who kept the rights to the MGM library in Turner Entertainment, sold the studio lot in Culver City to Lorimar, and sold the remnants of MGM back to Kerkorian that year. After Kerkorian sold and reacquired the company again in the 1990s, he expanded MGM by purchasing Orion Pictures and the Samuel Goldwyn Company, including both of their film libraries. Finally, in 2004, Kerkorian sold the company to a consortium that included Sony Pictures.
In 2010, MGM filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and reorganization. After reorganization, it emerged from bankruptcy later that year under its creditors' ownership. Two former executives at Spyglass Entertainment, Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum, became co-chairmen and co-CEOs of MGM's new holding company. After Barber's departure in 2020, the studio sought to be acquired by another company to pay its creditors.
In May 2021, Amazon acquired the studio for $8.45 billion; the deal closed in March 2022.
As of 2022, MGM is still producing and distributing feature films and television series. Its major film productions include the Rocky and James Bond franchises, and among its recent television productions is the series The Handmaid's Tale.