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Lions Gate poison pill appeal delayed to Friday

May 3, 2010 |  2:56 pm

The fate of Carl Icahn's attempt to take over Lions Gate Entertainment will stay locked up in Canadian courts until at least Friday.

The British Columbia Court of Appeals on Monday granted Lions Gate's request to delay a hearing on its appeal of a ruling by the British Columbia Securities Commission annulling its poison pill, which would block Icahn from buying the film and television studio. The hearing was pushed from Monday until Friday, according to a person familiar with the situation. Lions Gate requested the delay in hopes of getting more information from the British Columbia Securities Commission, which invalidated the poison pill last week but did not provide its reasoning.

Lions Gate is looking to overturn the BCSC ruling before its scheduled meeting May 12, at which shareholders will vote on the poison pill.

Icahn is fighting the appeal in hopes that the lack of a poison pill will encourage shareholders to accept his $7 per share tender offer. Originally scheduled to expire last Friday, Icahn extended the offer until May 10, apparently hoping that more clarity on the poison pill by next week will increase his chances to buy more stock and take over the studio.

Lions Gate is headquartered in Santa Monica but legally domiciled in Vancouver, giving authorities there jurisdiction over the company.

--Ben Fritz