NEW YORK, March 19 (Reuters) - U.S. film and TV studio The Weinstein Company plans to file for bankruptcy in Delaware as soon as Monday night with an offer for the company in hand from private equity firm Lantern Capital, a person familiar with the matter said.
An investor group led by former Obama administration official Maria Contreras-Sweet terminated its offer for the company earlier this month.
The bid from Lantern will set the floor for higher and better offers for the studio in a bankruptcy court-supervised auction, added the person.
The Weinstein Company has been looking for a buyer since its ex-chairman Harvey Weinstein was accused of sexual misconduct, including rape, by more than 70 women. Weinstein has denied having non-consensual sex with anyone.
Spokespeople for The Weinstein Company and Lantern Capital did not immediately return calls for comment. The source could not be identified because the person was not authorized to speak to the media.
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a lawsuit against the company and Bob and Harvey Weinstein last month, alleging that Harvey Weinstein sexually harassed employees and the company failed to respond. Bob Weinstein, Harvey Weinstein's brother, co-founded the company and is co-chairman.
The lawsuit complicated negotiations for Contreras-Sweet's deal.
Reuters reported last month that the Weinstein Company was looking for a loan that would carry it through its bankruptcy.
Hollywood trade publication Deadline Hollywood first reported that The Weinstein Company planned to file for bankruptcy as soon as Monday. (Reporting by Jessica DiNapoli; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)