21CF Flashback: 31 years ago, 21CF (then News Corp) buys first half of 20th Century Fox Film


On March 20, 1985, News Corporation Limited announced that it had agreed to purchase 50 percent of TCF Holdings Inc., which owned 20th Century Fox Film Corporation, for $162 million. As part of the deal, News Corporation loaned $88 million to TCF.

This purchase was 21CF’s first foray into the entertainment business, setting the company on a path to become the global force in film, and later television, that it is today. The 50 percent stake in TCF Holdings was followed by the company’s acquisition of the remaining half later that same year, giving 21CF full ownership of 20th Century Fox Film.

“This is a significant investment for The News Corporation in its development as an international multi-media organisation,” Rupert Murdoch said in the announcement.

“I am extremely happy to have Rupert Murdoch and his company as my partner,” said Marvin Davis, who bought 20th Century Fox Film in 1981 with financier Marc Rich for $725 million. “Mr. Murdoch is a proven entrepreneur and I look forward to a long and fruitful association.”

Below are photos of the press release and News Corporation announcement of the deal. See the Variety story written at the time for more details about the historic acquisition.