Pelman-HSI fires off 'Rambo' bid

Apr. 28, 1997 - A joint venture of indie filmmaker Yoram Pelman and TV commercial/music video outfit HSI Prods. put in a $600,000 bid for the sequel rights to the "Rambo" movies.

The trust liquidating Carolco Pictures, which landed in bankruptcy court 16 months ago and owns the "Rambo" property, is selling outright the sequel, prequel and remake rights to the well-known action movie franchise (HR 4/24). The $600,000 bid would top a $550,000 offer made Thursday from B-movie legend Roger Corman and $500,000 bid from the Dimension Films unit of Miramax Films.

Pelman, head of indie film outfit Tomorrow Films, and HSI -- which is led by Stavros Merjos -- have a movie joint venture that is making the bid. The William Morris Agency represents the venture.

HSI head of management and film Adam Rosenfelt and Pelman said their intention is create a new look for the "Rambo" franchise and not simply use the same formula.

Pelman is president of Santa Monica-based Tomorrow Films, which is handling foreign sales for thriller "The Lesser Evil" and "The Scalper."

HSI's credits in TV commercials include TV commercials for Coke, Pepsi and Nike; its music video credits are for Counting Crows, David Bowie, Nirvana and Smashing Pumpkins.

As reported, a Los Angeles bankruptcy court scheduled an auction-like sale of "Rambo" sequel rights May 13. New bids have to surpass the standing high offer in increments of $50,000, which is also the amount for an advance deposit required of bidders.