DreamWorks Reportedly Throwing Over Uni for Disney6 Feb, 2009 By: Chris Tribbey
Citing four anonymous sources, The New York Times is reporting that DreamWorks SKG’s planned distribution deal with Universal has fallen apart, and that Disney is now the new suitor for Steven Spielberg’s company.
People close to the negotiations told the Times that a deal could be announced as soon as next week.
Universal released a statement Feb. 6 that acknowledged the end of discussions with DreamWorks, and blamed the situation on DreamWorks’ demands for “material changes to previously agreed upon terms.”
“It is clear that DreamWorks' needs and Universal's business interests are no longer in alignment,” the statement said. “We wish them luck in their pursuit of funding and distribution of their future endeavors."
DreamWorks ended its relationship with Paramount in October, and had planned on a seven-year deal with Universal that would have Universal distributing up to six films a year.
However, since the deal was first announced, DreamWorks has reportedly been unable to secure the funds to match the $500 million that India’s Reliance Big Entertainment has committed to the new DreamWorks endeavor.
When the Universal arrangement was announced, Spielberg acknowledged that discussion with Disney had taken place as well.