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LIVE NATION'S NEW STAR IS BORN

Live Nation put about $40m into A Star Is Born, leading to the concert promoter’s biggest success for its 2-1/2-year-old film and TV unit, according to a Wall Street Journal report.

After ponying up for the production, Live Nation went to work on the marketing end, using Ticketmaster data to target fans and screening trailers and hanging posters at festivals and concerts.

“You couldn’t attend a Live Nation event for the last six months where you would not have been made aware of A Star is Born,” producer Billy Gerber told the Journal.

Prior to A Star Is Born, Live Nation Productions made six documentaries, among them Eagles of Death Metal: Nos Amis (Our Friends) and Gaga: Five Foot Two, which came about after Gaga’s manager, Bobby Campbell, had a chance meeting with Live Nation Productions chief Heather Parry.

Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino tells the Journal that the new division returns higher margins than its core concert-promotion business and that each project has turned a profit. The Warner Bros.-distributed A Star Is Born has grossed $148.6m in the U.S.

“We don’t believe we’re Spielberg overnight,” Rapino says. “But we have credible relationships with artists and cheap capital available to finance smart bets with them.”

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