MGM files for bankruptcy protection

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A photograph of the late singer and actor Elvis Presley is framed by a portion of the Academy Awards bestowed upon films from movie studio Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc. on display at the studio's Los Angeles office in this March 8, 2006 file photo. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc filed for bankruptcy on November 3, 2010, marking a climax to a drawn-out restructuring for the storied Hollywood studio that controls the James Bond films and made "The Wizard of Oz." [Xinhua/Reuters Photo]

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer has filed for bankruptcy protection on Wednesday morning as it was unable to pay off huge debts or make new movies.

Once the behemoth on the Hollywood scene, the studio filed for bankruptcy protection based on Chapter 11 as it has amassed four billion U.S. dollars in debt and has been unable to produce or release new films.

Billionaire investor Carl Icahn, who is the largest shareholder of Liongate, has bought roughly 20 percent of MGM's debts and used to push for a merger between MGM and Lionsgate, a leading independent film entertainment studio.

MGM is expected to exit Chapter 11 protection in one or two months, then small production company Spyglass Entertainment will take care of it, with its co-founders Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum serving as joint CEOs of the ill-fated company.

MGM announced on Oct. 29 that at least two thirds of its corporate creditors and more than half of the individual creditors had agreed to a prepackaged bankruptcy, thus paving the way for the filing of bankruptcy protection.

As a 86-year-old film production company, MGM has produced quite a few classic movies including "Gone with the Wind." Its films have walked away with Academy Awards for nearly 200 times.

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