Latham, Arent Fox steer Hollywood visual effects studio's $1.7 bln SPAC deal

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REUTERS/Andrew Kelly

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  • Latham advises DNEG, Arent Fox guided SPAC
  • Studio DNEG has worked on movies like "Inception," "Avengers: Endgame" and "Dune"
  • DNEG postponed London IPO in 2019

(Reuters) - Visual effects and animation studio for Hollywood films, DNEG, has paired with Latham & Watkins for its deal to go public through a $1.7 billion combination with a special purpose acquisition company advised by Arent Fox.

DNEG said on Tuesday it would use the merger to become a public company on Nasdaq. It had postponed its plans for a 2019 London listing, citing market uncertainty at the time.

SPACs raise funds through initial public offerings to merge with privately held companies and take them public.

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London-based DNEG has crafted visual effects for films like “Dune,” the new “Matrix” reboot and several Marvel Studios movies, according to its website. The company, which has also worked on popular movies "Inception" and "Mission Impossible: Fallout,” has received six Oscar awards for visual effects.

Latham corporate partners Steven Stokdyk and Lewis Kneib are advising DNEG, the firm said in a statement. Kneib, who is the co-chair of the firm’s Los Angeles corporate department, previously advised DNEG, according to his firm bio.

The SPAC, a repeat client of Arent Fox, turned to corporate partners Tal Unrad, Michael Andresino and William D’Angelo; and counsel Jeffrey Jordan, the firm said in a statement.

Sidley Austin is advising the banks who secured investors for a $168 million private investment in public equity, or PIPE, that is part of the merger.

Read more:

DNEG, visual effects studio behind "Tenet", to go public in $1.7 bln SPAC deal

Hollywood visual effects firm DNEG postpones London IPO

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Sierra Jackson reports on legal matters in major mergers and acquisitions, including deal work, litigation and regulatory changes.