Lions Gate Entertainment, the film studio behind the Hunger Games movie franchise, said it would buy premium television network Starz for $4.4 billion in cash and stock, in a deal that would unite two media companies with ties to cable mogul John Malone.
Lions Gate will pay $32.70 per share for Starz, representing a premium of nearly 16 percent to Starz's closing price on Wednesday.
Shares of Lions Gate were up 8.6 percent in premarket trading. Starz shares were up 10.6 percent below the offer price at $31.25.
Lions Gate expects the deal to be "highly accretive," it said on Thursday.