Why Shari Redstone called off talks with David Ellison’s Skydance on Paramount deal


Shari Redstone has finally spoken.

After weeks of endless speculation about the future of Paramount Global, and more than half a year of grueling negotiations, the heiress called off talks with David Ellison’s Skydance Media, astonishing the industry and raising questions about the future of her family-controlled media empire.

The deal went up in flames at the one-yard line. Just as Paramount’s special committee was set to vote on the deal, lawyers representing the Redstone holding company National Amusements Inc. sent word that she had moved to end merger discussions, CNN was told.

Why Redstone ultimately vetoed the deal is now up for discussion. Was Redstone irked by the latest financials of the offer? Was she afraid of shareholder litigation? Is legacy at play? Or is it simply that Redstone just cannot let go of the empire her father, Sumner, built?

The answer, of course, depends — greatly — on who you ask.

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