Lions Gate Entertainment's battle with activist investor Carl Icahn is drawing blood -- its own, it would seem. The company on Monday posted a first-quarter loss of $64.1 million, $7.3 million of which was attributed to "corporate defense costs related to shareholder activist activities." It reported a net profit of $35 million for the comparable period a year ago. In a statement, CEO Jon Feltheimer did not mention the struggle with Icahn, who is seeking to gain control of the company, blaming the loss instead on "marketing costs for our three wide releases, timing of television deliveries and the underperformance of our theatrical release Killers ." (The other two releases were Tyler Perry's Why Did I Get Married too? and Kick-Ass. Analysts also noted revenue from DVD and Blu-ray sales was down 22 percent during the period. Ordinarily the poor results would have provided Icahn with additional ammunition in his war against Lions Gate's managers, but he may be holding fire until results for next weekend's The Expendables come in, something the film's producer and star, Sylvester Stallone, acknowledged in an interview with today's (Tuesday) Los Angeles Times . "If the movie does perform," he said, "it could help take some of the pressure off. It's been tense over there."

10/08/2010