By Jamie Savarese
Universal PicturesContact Information: 
100 Universal City Plaza
Universal City, CA 91608
Twitter Handle: @
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/universalstudiosentertainment
Universal Pictures is one of Hollywood’s “Big Six” film studios and is owned by Comcast through its subordinate company, NBCUniversal. The company distributes filmed entertainment for a growing global marketplace. They develop films internally, co-produce and distribute films developed by outside partners. Universal produces and distributes direct-to-DVD titles. The company has partners with a variety of leading international film companies in order to make and distribute films for wide commercial release. Their content is available through pay and free television, cinematic exhibition and subscription on-demand services. Universal has a diverse film pool and has showcased numerous classics including Jaws, E.T., Back to the Future and the Jurassic Park series. 
Brief HistoryIn 1912 Carl Laemmle, a film exhibitor turned producer, founded Universal Pictures. Universal is the world’s third oldest major film studio, and the second oldest in Hollywood.  In the early years of the studio it was a top producer of popular low-budget serials. It took the name of Universal-International for a while. In the early 1970s the Music Corporation of America purchased Universal. In 2004 Universal Pictures (as part of Vivendi Universal Entertainment) merged with the National Broadcasting Co., Inc., to form NBC Universal. 
Box office wise, currently Universal is ranked 5th with 11.2% of the market share, grossing $1,023.9 million from its 17 films. This marks a 26% decrease from the prior year. In 2013 Universal was ranked 3rd with 13.1% of market share, grossing $1,433.3 million from its 17 films. The gross difference between 2013 and 2014 is -$358,971,454. 
Right Here, Right Now
In 2014, Universal Pictures released thirteen films and two are currently still in theatres: Dumb and Dumber To and Ouija. This fall Universal released six of its thirteen 2014 films: Get On Up, As Above/So Below, A Walk Among the Tombstones, Dracula Untold, Ouija and Dumb and Dumber To.
This year marks the 120th anniversary for the Ouija board. Writers Juliet Snowden and Stiles White devised Ouija, a terrifying horror film based on an unexpected death. A group of friends attempt to uncover the secret behind their best friends hanging, and end up awaking the dark powers of an ancient spirit board. 
Dracula Untold is a dark tale set to take place in Romania during the Turkish invasion. The main character Vlad (Luke Evans) sells his soul in an attempt to save his homeland. This choice forever dooms him as a creature of the night. Directed by Gary Shore and written by Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless. 
This action-thriller Lucy tracks the story of a woman, Lucy (Scarlett Johansson), who is accidentally caught in a dark deal. The package that her kidnappers expect her to carry ends up empowering Lucy. With this new mental capacity she turns the tables on her captors and turns into an unstoppable warrior evolved beyond the human logic. Luc Besson directs the film.
In Other News:On 15 July 2014, Elevation Pictures’, a Canadian indie distributor, co-presidents Laurie May and Noah Segal announced that Universal will be releasing its home entertainment product locally. The deal permits Elevation Pictures to handle Blu-ray and DVD sales of current and upcoming films into the Canadian market. Mike Flanagan’s Oculus was the first film to be handled by Universal’s Canadian home entertainment arm.
On 17 November 2014, Universal Pictures and Comcast brass gathered for an opening ceremony in Beijing. This signaled Universal’s push into China with their new office. The company stated that this office was a sign of proof to establish the future investment they wish to have within the region. 
On 24 November 2014, Universal stepped up to adopt the high-profile Steve Jobs movie from Sony. The Hollywood Reporter states that their sources have the deal between the two companies priced more than $30 million. The film is based on Walter Isaacson’s biography Steve Jobs, which hit stores in 2011. The script was written by Aaron Sorkin and is set to be directed by Danny Boyle. 
What’s To Come:
Universal will release its popular comedic sequel, Pitch Perfect 2, on 15 May 2015. The film revisits the Barden Bells as they progress past domestic competition, and prepare for the international acapella competition that no American team has ever won. The film is directed by Elizabeth Banks and written by Kay Cannon and based on the book by Mickey Rapkin. 
-Video Courtesy of YouTube.com
Future of Universal
The future of Universal looks positive and optimistic. The sequel movies Pitch Perfect 2 and TED 2 will bring a lot of people into theatres. Along with these, the well-known Jurassic Park series, Jurassic World, will spike much commotion. Another big prospect is the release of the popular novel adapted movie 50 Shades of Grey. With such high-discussed movies on the horizon, it only looks like the company will go up from here. 
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