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Proving his naysayers wrong, Bronfman Jr. emerged Thursday with commitments from major private equity firms Thomas H. Lee Partners and Blackstone Group to finance his bid for Universal’s movie studio, theme parks, television channels and music company.

JUNIOR TO THE RESCUE

Can Bronfman Reacquire Universal Entertainment Assets From Vivendi?
Look, up in the sky. It's a bird, it's a plane... It's Junior Miles.

Could Edgar Bronfman Jr. himself be Universal's white knight as the Seagram exec attempts to buy back the very same entertainment interests he sold to the French-owned Vivendi in 2000 for $34 billion and is now valued at about $16 billion?

Proving his naysayers wrong, Bronfman Jr. emerged Thursday with commitments from major private equity firms Thomas H. Lee Partners and Blackstone Group to finance his bid for Universal’s movie studio, theme parks, television channels and music company, according to numerous published reports.

Last month, Bronfman secured a $9 billion commitment from a group that includes Merrill Lynch and Wachovia Corp. He has also approached Cablevision Systems to serve as a strategic partner and, to avoid conflict of interest, had agreed to stop attending Vivendi board and committee meetings with his father.

Among the competition Edgar faces for the assets are John Malone’s Liberty Media, Sumner Redstone’s Viacom, MGM, General Electric and an investment group headed by oil tycoon Marvin Davis, who has offered $13 billion for a controlling interest in the company.

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