Orion Pictures Corporation is an American motion picture production and distribution company that produced and released films from 1978 until 1999, and was also involved in television production and syndication throughout the 1980s until the early 1990s. It was formed in 1978 as a joint venture between Warner Bros. and three former top-level executives of United Artists. Although it was never a large motion picture producer, Orion achieved a comparatively high reputation for Hollywood quality. Woody Allen, James Cameron, Jonathan Demme, Oliver Stone, and several other prominent directors worked with Orion during its most successful years from 1978 to 1992. Of the films distributed by Orion, four won Academy Awards for Best Picture: Amadeus (1984), Platoon (1986), Dances with Wolves (1990), and The Silence of the Lambs (1991). Two other Orion films, Hannah and Her Sisters (1986) and Mississippi Burning (1988), were nominated for that same category. In 2013, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer revived the Orion name for television; a year later the Orion Pictures brand was quietly relaunched by the studio.

In September 2017, MGM revived the Orion Pictures brand as a standalone, US theatrical distribution and marketing company releasing four to six low budget movies per year, either produced by MGM themselves or acquired from outside producers. It's headed by John Hegeman, who incidentally enough started his career at the old Orion in the 1980s. The first film released by the new Orion was Every Day in February 2018. In May 2018, Orion Classics, a former arthouse division of the old Orion, was revived as a specialty division dedicated to eight to ten multi-platform and limited theatrical releases per year. Beginning in April 2019 after the release of The Prodigy, Orion Pictures' subsequent releases will be distributed by United Artists Releasing, a US theatrical distribution joint venture of MGM and Annapurna Pictures, after Orion's distribution team was absorbed into UA Releasing upon its formation. The company will now release two to four films per year.[1]




  1. "MGM Studios - Investor Relations: YE 2018 Stockholder Call (MP3)". Investor Relations - mgm.com. Retrieved on May 5, 2019.
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