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October 28, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

Continuing to play a fascinating game of high-stakes chess, activist investor Carl Icahn on Wednesday made his third offer within a week to MGM debtholders. Icahn said he would pay 50 cents on the dollars to acquire MGM senior debt — if they submit the shares to him by Friday. (His previous offers stipulated minimum amounts of debt that had to be offered; his latest does not.) Friday is the day that debt holders are due to vote on whether to accept a plan proposed by Spyglass Entertainment that would convert all of MGM’s debt into 95 percent ownership of the studio — with the remaining 5 percent to be held by Spyglass partners Roger Birnbaum and Gary Barber. Icahn is looking to gain control of MGM, then combine it with Lions Gate Entertainment, in which he is the largest shareholder. Meanwhile, today’s (Thursday) New York Post reported that Icahn and his supporters have hired top bankruptcy lawyer Tom Lauria to hash out a deal with MGM creditors supporting the Spyglass plan.

Daily Variety reported on its website late today (Thursday) that Lionsgate has filed suit against Carl Icahn, charging that he has been playing “a double game” by publicly opposing Lionsgate’s merger offer to MGM debt holders while secretly buying up massive amounts of MGM debt. The suit asks the court to bar the Icahn Group from acquiring additional shares of Lionsgate stock until Icahn makes full disclosure of his designs upon the two companies to the Securities and Exchange Commission.