Crown Media Sells Film Library

The domestic rights to the 600-plus movies fetches $160 million.
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Crown Media Holdings

(CRWN)

has agreed to sell the domestic rights to its film library for $160 million.

The company, which owns and operates the Hallmark Channel, is selling all U.S. rights to the more than 600 television movies, miniseries and series in the Crown Media library to RHI Enterprises. The deal, which is subject to regulatory approvals, is expected to close in six to eight weeks.

Crown Media will have the right to continue to broadcast selected titles from the library on the Hallmark Movie Channel for up to two years. It sold international rights to the library in 2005 to a group of investors comprised of Providence Equity Partners, 3i and U.K. television executive David Elstein.

In separate news, Crown Media Wednesday appointed Henry Schleiff to serve as CEO. He joins the company from Court Television Network, where he served as chairman and CEO from 1999 through 2006 and where he helped negotiate the sale of Court TV to

Time Warner

(TWX)

.

Shares of Crown Media were down a penny, or 0.2%, at $4.56 in recent after-hours trading Thursday.