8 Stocks Ready for Their Close-ups

12/12/2013 7:00 am EST

Focus: STOCKS

As the year ends and film studios release their best, cinephiles will want to watch these movie stocks, writes James Dennin on Kapitall.com.

You don't need to be a movie buff to know that many film studios save their most anticipated movies for the end of the year. The deadline for Academy Awards submissions coupled with the flurry of holiday spending make the last few weeks of December an exciting time to follow movie stocks.

Often the stocks of major studios go down on the day that they release a big hit. This has been true for many of the year's blockbusters so far. Lions Gate Films (LGF) took a small dip after the second Hunger Games robust opening weekend. However, that was after the stock returned more than 90% for the year.

True to form, Disney's (DIS) Frozen is generating a lot of hype as well, earning rave reviews and topping the box office over the weekend. Disney's stock is down about 0.4% this morning, although in a similar vein the stock is up 44% for the year.

Another major release to watch will be Viacom's (VIA) Anchorman 2. While the first film in the series performed modestly at the summer box office, it quickly developed a large following. The studio has also undertaken an expansive and unconventional marketing campaign: releasing a customized line of scotch, a book release, and even putting the fictitious Ron Burgundy on air to read a live news broadcast in Fargo, ND.

A movie stock popular among value investors is Time Warner Inc. (TWX). Time Warner is up 40% for the year, but still trades cheaply relative to its competitors at 2.0 times this year's earnings. Later this year the studio will release what will likely be its biggest title of 2013, The Hobbit 2.

Do you see the run-up to awards season as a good time to invest in movie studio stocks? Or just a good time to see a movie? We compiled a list of some film industry stocks to watch.

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So are there investing opportunities in the entertainment industry? Use the list below to begin your own analysis. 

1. DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. (DWA): Engages in the development, production, and exploitation of animated feature films and characters worldwide. Market cap at $2.86B, most recent closing price at $34.10.

2. 21st Century Fox (FOX): Operates as a diversified media and entertainment company worldwide. Market cap at $73.41B, most recent closing price at $32.16.

3. Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. (LGF): Operates as a media and entertainment company in the United States and internationally. Market cap at $59.51B, most recent closing price at $66.57.

4. Time Warner Inc. (TWX): Operates as a media and entertainment company in the United States and internationally. Market cap at $59.51B, most recent closing price at $66.57.

5. Walt Disney Co. (DIS): Operates as an entertainment company worldwide. Market cap at $125.02B, most recent closing price at $71.46.

6. IMAX Corporation (IMAX): Operates as an entertainment technology company worldwide. Market cap at $1.94B, most recent closing price at $29.05.

7. Regal Entertainment Group (RGC): Operates a theatre circuit in the United States. Market cap at $3.00B, most recent closing price at $19.44.

8. Viacom Inc. (VIA): Operates as an entertainment content company in the United States and internationally. Market cap at $36.70, most recent closing price at $82.34.

Analyst ratings sourced from Zacks Investment Research, all other data sourced from Finviz.

By James Dennin of Kapitall.com

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