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Terminator Cartoon? Most Likely Not

New holder of franchise rights tells former production company to stop plans, but how would the $70 million price tag be funded?

If there is a Terminator animated feature to be produced, it won't come without the blessing of the new franchise rights holder.

Pacificor LLC, the hedge fund manager that acquired the rights to Terminator last winter for nearly $30 million, said plans by Eric Parkinson, the former chief executive of Hemsdale Communications, to produce a cartoon version set in the Terminator universe was violating their rights as the property holder.

Parkinson, whose company was behind the first "The Terminator" film in 1984 with James Cameron, said when he sold sequel rights to Carolco -- which produced "Terminator 2: Judgment Day" in the early 1990s -- what it didn't include were animation rights. And since they still own those rights, they can create a cartoon called "Terminator 3000" based on the first film.

Pacificor, however, says that's not the case. Even if Parkinson did have animation rights, they hold the overall intellectual property rights. Pacificor wouldn't be able to make an animated project without Parkinson, but Parkinson wouldn't be able to make any type of Terminator project without Pacificor, according to Jeff Sneider of The Wrap.

Pacificor reportedly has no plans to make a Terminator project of its own. It forced The Halcyon Co. into bankruptcy last year and acquired the rights through an auction. Pacificor's main goal is to provide a return on investment for its stakeholders, so its likely move would be to then sell the rights, possibly to Sony or Lionsgate, both of which had expressed interest in the franchise when it was on the auction block.

Parkinson is now head of Hannover House, and has been told by Pacificor to cease and desist. Hannover House is a publicly traded media distributor founded in 1993 that had less than $1 million in overall revenue last year, according to Wikipedia. Operating under the Target Development Group, Hannover House does not readily make its files with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission available, so it's unclear how the company would finance the proposed $70 million project it said it would do in partnership with Red Bear Entertainment.

Hannover conducted a reverse merger with Target Development last December, a move allowing a company to go public without taking on some of the massive expenses involved in an initial public stock offering. In the press release announcing the reverse merger, Hannover was said to be in control of about $15 million in assets, and would maintain a headquarters in Arkansas to keep it in close proximity with Wal-Mart Inc., which apparently is the company's primary retail outlet.

In financial filings with Pink Sheets, an over-the-counter stock market that primarily deals with penny stocks, Target reported a first quarter profit of just under $4,000 on revenue of $239,000.

Hannover House said it would release details on how it would be funded in January, according to a release. That is, if the project actually moves forward.

Yahoo Finance has only five days of stock movement for Target Development, where shares traded between 4 cents and 5 cents, giving it a market capitalization (the value of all its available stock) at $12.1 million. The proposed animated feature is at least six times its total market cap, so it can only be assumed that Red Bear is going to finance the project.

But that begs the question ... what is Red Bear? A Google search only turns up the original Hannover House press release on "Terminator 3000" and news reports following it. An Internet Movie Database search pulls up a Red Bear Productions that produced the 2008 Julian Lee film "Little Bear and the Master," but that is most likely not the same company that Hannover says it's working with.

About the Author

Michael Hinman is the founder and editor-in-chief for Airlock Alpha and the entire GenreNexus. He owns Nexus Media Group Inc., the parent corporation of the GenreNexus and is a veteran print journalist. He lives in Tampa, Fla.
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