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Weinstein Co. told to get back to basics

August 15, 2009 |  6:30 am

Stick to what you know.

QuentinThat's the word that Weinstein Co. has gotten from Miller Bruckfire, the New York-based financial consulting firm the production company hired last June to advise it on how to clean up its balance sheet.

In the short term, the company is hoping Quentin Tarantino's "Inglourious Basterds," which opens next weekend, will provide a much-needed boost to the bottom line as well as to the morale of Weinstein Co.

Founded by brothers Bob and Harvey Weinstein after they sold Miramax to Walt Disney Co.,  Weinstein Co. has struggled as of late and will probably heed the advice of Miller Bruckfire. That means unloading the non-core assets it has bought or invested in over the last few years, including its stake in the cable network Ovation and the fashion label Halston.

Weinstein Co. is also going to trim its film ambitions. The company had been releasing up to 20 movies a year, but will now keep it under ten. And of those, at least half will be from Dimension Films, a label of horror and occasional family movies that is overseen by Bob Weinstein.

Although there have been rampant rumors that the company's financial woes are severe, a spokesman said "there is no danger of having to file for bankruptcy." The company also said it will be able to release several movies that have been in limbo as of late including "All Good Things" and "Youth in Revolt." As for its likely Oscar contender "The Road," that release probably will be shifted to December from October. "Nine" is still scheduled for November.

For more on the challenges facing Weinstein Co., please read today's Los Angeles Times.

-- Joe Flint

Photo: Quentin Tarantino. Credit: Andrew H. Walker / Getty Images