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RON HOWARD & BRIAN GRAZER TO LEAVE IMAGINE FILMS UPON EXPIRATION OF CURRENT EMPLOYMENT AGREEMENTS; CO-FOUNDERS CONSIDERING OFFER TO BUY CO.

RON HOWARD & BRIAN GRAZER TO LEAVE IMAGINE FILMS UPON EXPIRATION OF CURRENT EMPLOYMENT AGREEMENTS; CO-FOUNDERS CONSIDERING OFFER TO BUY CO.
 LOS ANGELES, May 1 /PRNewswire/ -- Ron Howard and Brian Grazer, co- chief executive officers of Imagine Films Entertainment (NASDAQ: IFEI), announced today that they have decided not to renew their employment agreements with Imagine when these contracts expire on Nov. 27. Howard and Grazer, who had announced last December that they were considering alternatives to renewing their contracts, said they intend to form a private production company to produce films upon the expiration of their current employment agreements.
 "Ron and I want to keep working closely together, but after six years of coping with the demands of running a public company, we have concluded that we would rather focus all of our time and creative energies on making movies," said Grazer.
 In connection with their announced departure, Howard and Grazer said in a letter to the board of directors of Imagine that they support the company exploring all available options to protect and enhance shareholder value, including retention of a new chief executive, the sale of the company, or an orderly liquidation, either in conjunction with a sale or otherwise.
 In addition, as one alternative and to protect public shareholders of Imagine from receiving less than the current market value of their stock, Howard and Grazer said they are exploring the feasibility of submitting a proposal to purchase the company in which the public shareholders of Imagine would receive approximately $9.00 per share.
 Howard and Grazer also said they are in discussions with Universal Pictures, a division of MCA, Inc., to obtain a commitment from Universal to help finance such a transaction, which could take the form of a sale of assets and which would be subject to negotiation of a definitive agreement, approval of disinterested directors and shareholders, the absence of any better alternative, and receipt of a fairness opinion from an independent financial advisor.
 Howard and Grazer cautioned that any proposal by them would be subject to obtaining adequate financing and there can be no assurance that such financing will be available or that any proposal, if made, would be accepted or consummated or that any better alternative will emerge.
 Howard and Grazer are also in discussions with Universal regarding an agreement for the distribution of their new company's films by Universal, to become effective when Howard and Grazer's current employment contracts expire. Universal, which is currently the principal distributor of Imagine films, has indicated that any financing it would provide for a transaction between Howard/Grazer and Imagine would be conditioned on reaching a distribution agreement with Howard and Grazer's new private production company and on negotiation and execution of satisfactory financing documents.
 -0- 5/1/92
 /CONTACT: George Sard or Anna Cordasco of Ogilvy Adams & Rinehart, 212-557-0100, for Imagine Films/
 (IFEI) CO: Imagine Films Entertainment ST: California IN: ENT SU: PER


TS -- NY016 -- 5339 05/01/92 09:29 EDT
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Copyright 1992 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:May 1, 1992
Words:495
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