Netflix has begun “advanced talks” to purchase the studio behind films such as “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets,” “Taken,” “Lock-Out,” and other blockbuster films. French filmmaker Luc Besson co-founded the studio EuropaCorp in 1999 but ended up losing $83 million at the end of 2017.

Variety initially reported that several groups were interested in buying the company, which has been facing a massive debt problem. Netflix has been working with the studio with the intent of “buying into” the streaming platform’s library and also have Besson direct and produce films strictly for Netflix.

They were close to reaching an agreement in February and the deal would make Netflix have an operational management of EuropaCorp.

Netflix and EuropaCorp deal moves from global deals

EuropaCorp’s partnership with Netflix would move from relying on global sales and collaborations with distributors based in Germany, Belgium, and the Middle East. Many of the distributor deals are expiring in the next few years, opening up the door for Netflix. It’s unclear whether Netflix’s movies produced by Besson would be the English language based or whether Besson would produce English and French movies for distributors.

EuropaCorp’s value fell over 60 percent since the release of “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.” Besson’s next film will be “Anna,” which is set to be released by Lionsgate.

EuropaCorp recently sold off its French TV production for $13.6 but continues to own their US production crew, which is responsible for the series “Taken.”

Netflix deal would help expand their original series offerings

Purchasing the studio would help Netflix as they continue to face off against Amazon, Hulu, Apple and Disney who are producing original content.

Netflix recently said that they would be spending more than $8 billion on original content. Since January, Netflix has been releasing many high-profile films including Bright and Okja. They also recently released “The Cloverfield Paradox,” which was previously delayed by Paramount.

Capital reports that the deal would close sometime this summer.

As part of the deal, Besson would stay on and run the company on the creative side and continue to make films.

It’s been reported that Besson is still considering making a Valerian sequel but on a much smaller budget. If the sequel is made, people are expecting to see it on Netflix. Besson would also be surrendering his majority ownership of the company.