Category: Business

Headline News Lions Gate Set To Purchase Harvey

Sources say that Vancouver-based film producer Lions Gate Entertainment is on the verge of purchasing Harvey Entertainment. As reported in VARIETY, Harvey chairman/CEO Roger Burlage has been shopping the home of Casper around to many companies. Last spring Burlage saved Harvey from acquisition by Artisans by securing US$17 million in funding from entertainment company Kushner-Locke and then-investment banker and current Lions Gate vice-chairman, Michael Burns. The funds came in the form of $11.5 million in cash and $5.5 million in Kushner-Locke stock.

Headline News Rainbow Studios Acquires Motional Realms

Rainbow Studios, a creator of digital entertainment, announced its acquisition of Motional Realms, the developers of the ReelMotion real-time simulator that uses physics and collision detection to animate vehicles and objects realistically. By simulating the underlying physics, ReelMotion allows animators to animate any type of two or four-wheeled vehicle, a variety of aircraft and other objects.

Headline News Go Is Gone, Walt Disney Internet Group In

Go.com, Inc., the Internet group of the Walt Disney Co., has changed its name to the Walt Disney Internet Group. The name change was made to better reflect the new direction of the Internet company, which has moved its focus away from a Yahoo-like portal to a more Disney-geared entertainment destination. The Disney arm has been plagued with problems from the start. In the last quarter, the company reported a net loss of US$272.1 million, including amortization of intangible assets.

Headline News Cinar Sale Next Possible Option In Light Of Delisting

In light of Nasdaqs delisting of their stock, troubled animation producer Cinar Corp. has brought in investment bank Merrill Lynch & Co. to help assess the future options for the company, which may include the sale of all or parts of the company. "Merrill Lynch & Co. will work with us and our current advisors, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, to review all strategic alternatives available to the Company in order to maximize future shareholder value, including any proposed business combination, partnerships or mergers," said Barrie Usher, President and CEO of CINAR.

Headline News China Slashes Cartoon Imports’ Airtime

The Chinese Administration of Radio, Film and Television has instituted a new regulation cutting the airtime of imported cartoons. Starting on June 1, TV networks in China must air six Chinese toons for every four imported ones. Before the new rule two-thirds of the cartoons broadcast in China were from foreign soil and with their domestic production only reaching 6,000 minutes (roughly 272 twenty-two-minute episodes) a year there is little for Chinese programming to choose from.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, August 1, 2000

AWN's stock ticker features the most prominent publicly traded companies in the world of animation. AWN, Inc. makes available certain financial information from third party information providers. AWN does not give advice in any such fields, and has not reviewed, and in no way endorses the validity of such data. This information is provided solely as a means to keep our readers informed of the market performance and trends of certain companies. AWN strongly suggests that one seek advice from a competent professional regarding any investment or financial issues.

Headline News Pulse and Exmachina Sign Distribution Deal

Pulse Entertainment has signed a deal with Paris-based digital post-production company, Exmachina, which will have the French post house resell Pulse technology to developers, designers, agencies and corporate clients in Europe. Exmachina first utilized the Pulse software to create a Web character, Akinia, who helps on-line gamers solve riddles in a treasure hunt. "We are making Pulse technology one of the cornerstones as we build our Web business," said Pierre Noizat, general manager of Exmachina.

Headline News New Tinkerbell Inc. Sues Disney Over Fairy Rights

New York-based New Tinkerbell, Inc. has filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against the Walt Disney Co. in regards to the Tinkerbell trademark. As reported in the on-line magazine, INSIDE, New Tinkerbell and its several affiliates claim they purchased the rights to the character from the then rights holder, the Hospital for Sick Children of London, in 1952 a year before Disneys PETER PAN was released. For 13 years, New Tinkerbell has been producing various products with the image of Tinkerbell on them.

Headline News Prima's Widow Sues Disney

Late swing-jazz singer Louis Primas widow, Gia Prima, has filed suit against the Walt Disney Company for unpaid royalties from video and DVD sales of THE JUNGLE BOOK, in which her husband voiced the character King Louie of the Apes. The Prima estate has received royalties on audio recordings of the soundtrack, however Disney contends the contract Prima signed was for audio recordings only and that Disney has "met all contractual obligations to Mr. Prima's estate." However, new technologies, like videocassettes and DVDS, were not invented when Prima signed the contract.

Headline News Sony In The Red, PlayStation 2 & New Accounting Rules Are Factors

On Wednesday, July 27, 2000, Sony Corp. announced it fell into the red in the first quarter ended June 30, 2000 as one-off charges from a change in U.S. accounting rules eroded profits. The electronics and entertainment company posted a group net loss of ¥88.26 billion (US$808.2 million) in the quarter, versus an ¥18.43 billion ($168.8 million) profit a year prior. Sony had ¥101.65 billion ($930.8 million) in extraordinary losses from film advertising costs and canceled projects development expenses in the first quarter of this year due to new U.S.

Headline News Avid Second Quarter Revenues See Some Increase

Avid Technology, Inc. announced financial results for the quarter ended June 30, 2000. Revenues for 200O were US$120 million up from $116.4 million a year ago. For the quarter, the company recorded a net loss of $18.1 million, or $.07 per share, including amortization of acquisition-related intangible assets, compared to a net loss of $8 million, or $.34 per share in the second quarter of 1999.

Headline News Vivendi, Canal + & Seagram Merger Approved In France

The Conseil Superieur de lAudiovisuel (CSA), a French broadcasting watchdog, has approved the three-way merger between Vivendi, Canal + and Seagram, the parent of Universal Pictures. The okay came on the heels of Vivendi chairman and CEO Jean-Marie Messiers decision not to fold Canal +s subscriber base into Vivendi Universal, thus avoiding French television ownership laws prohibiting a single shareholder from owning 49% or more of a TV network.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Wednesday, July 26, 2000

AWN's Stock Ticker features the most prominent publicly traded companies in the world of animation. AWN, Inc. makes available certain financial information from third party information providers. AWN does not give advice in any such fields, and has not reviewed, and in no way endorses the validity of such data. This information is provided solely as a means to keep our readers informed of the market performance and trends of certain companies. AWN strongly suggests that one seek advice from a competent professional regarding any investment or financial issues.

Headline News Amid Talks With Nasdaq, Cinar Sued Again

On Wednesday, July 26, 2000, Cinar Corporation began its discussions with Nasdaq officials to explain why they have not filed their annual reports and financial statements from as far back at November 30, 1999. In the midst of the talks, Cinar has announced they have been sued again! This time, the former owners of Cinar subsidiary, Carson-Dellosa Publishing, which Cinar purchased in 1997, have brought forth the lawsuit.

Headline News Intel & Macromedia Partner To Bring 3D Graphics To Shockwave Player

Intel Corporation and Macromedia, Inc. have partnered to bring Intels 3D graphics software technology to Macromedias Shockwave Player. Intels technology will provide a richer look to the Shockwave Player with multiple resolution settings depending on the users computing power. The Intel technology allows providers to create smooth, photo-realistic surfaces, cartoon rendering and effects that include smoke, fire, water and vapor. The compressed Macromedia Shockwaves format will allow narrow bandwidth users easier access to 3D content.

Headline News Macromedia Revenue Up 85% Over Last Quarter

Macromedia announced revenues of $94.8 million for the first quarter ended June 30, 2000, an 85% increase over a year ago. With these results, the company has achieved record revenue results for the tenth consecutive quarter. Pro forma net income grew more than 300% year over year to $14.5 million, or $0.26 diluted earnings per share during the first quarter of fiscal 2001, compared to pro forma net income of $3.5 million, or $0.07 diluted earnings per share in the same period a year ago.

Headline News Three UK Companies Form tv4c

U.K. distributor Chatsworth TV, producer Flicks Films and post-production house VTR plc have come together to create a joint venture called tv4c (television for children). Creating mainly pre-school productions, the new group will handle all production, distribution, licensing and merchandising of their properties. The projects will rely on the talent of Flicks Films Terry Ward, producer of the successful MR. MEN. Already the three-way venture has four projects under way.

Headline News Time Warner Releases Record 2nd Quarter Results

Time Warner Inc. has reported record operating results for the second quarter of 2000. Operating income before amortization of intangible assets (EBITA) grew 12% over the comparable 1999 quarter. With cable networks, publishing, filmed entertainment, and cable all posting record normalized operating results, Time Warner reported normalized EBITA of US$1.381 billion for 2000's second quarter versus $1.237 billion for the same period a year ago.

Headline News British Film Office Sends F/X Exec To LA

The British Film Office has appointed visual effects veteran Meg Guidon as their visual effects marketing executive. The newly created position was created to increase the visibility of U.K. F/X houses with U.S. production companies. The hope is to bring more high-profile work to the U.K. like MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE 2 and GLADIATOR, both of which were done in London. Guidon will be based out of the British Film Office at the Consulate General in Los Angeles, California, U.S.A. Previously Guidon worked at some of the UK's leading visual effects firms including Cinesite and Mill Film.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, July 18, 2000.

AWN's stock ticker features the most prominent publicly traded companies in the world of animation. AWN, Inc. makes available certain financial information from third party information providers. AWN does not give advice in any such fields, and has not reviewed, and in no way endorses the validity of such data. This information is provided solely as a means to keep our readers informed of the market performance and trends of certain companies. AWN strongly suggests that one seek advice from a competent professional regarding any investment or financial issues.

Headline News DIC & Korea’s Ameko Ink Co-Production Deal

Walt Disney-owned DIC Entertainment and Korea-based animation firm Ameko Entertainment Co. have signed a multiyear deal to produce half-hour animated series. DIC will hold the worldwide distribution rights except in Korea. The first project, SUPER DUPER SUMOS, has already begun production. Executive producing the series will be DIC execs Andy Heyward, Robby London and Like Maliani along with Amekos Dong Chung and Robert Scharf. "The relationship between the company and Ameko has been very productive," DIC CEO and president Heyward said.

Headline News Imax Might Sell Out, Disney Style

On Thursday, July 13, 2000, Imax Corporation announced that the company has brought in financial advisors Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Wasserstein, Perella & Co. to help maximize revenues for the company, which could include the sale or merger of the company. Imax co-CEOs Richard L. Gelfond and Bradley J. Wechsler said, "Imax has made tremendous strides in the last few years on several strategic initiatives including establishing the IMAX theatre network as a release window for Hollywood films and securing a role in the digital future of entertainment.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, July 11, 2000

AWN's stock ticker features the most prominent publicly traded companies in the world of animation. AWN, Inc. Network makes available certain financial information from third party information providers. AWN does not give advice in any such fields, and has not reviewed, and in no way endorses the validity of such data. This information is provided solely as a means to keep our readers informed of the market performance and trends of certain companies. AWN strongly suggests that one seeks advice from a competent professional regarding any investment or financial issues.

Headline News Cartoonists’ Union Rolls Out Net Contract

The Motion Picture Screen Cartoonists, Local 839 IATSE, has rolled out a special agreement for dotcom studios producing animation for the Net. The Union has drafted a newer, simpler contract without the traditional animation classifications and rates. The Web contract is designed to offer Internet start-ups maximum flexibility while still providing animation employees with their regular pension and health coverage. The new contract will provide health and pension benefits under the same multi-employer plan as that of other union shops.

Headline News Fox, Compaq Deal Makes Blue Sky Top 3D Studio

Blue Sky Studios, a unit of Fox Filmed Entertainment, has signed an agreement with Compaq Computer Corporation that will make the 3D animation studio into one of the top 50 super computing facilities worldwide, according to the Linpack-based "Top 500 list." Planning to use the new computer equipment on the upcoming ICE AGE, the Oscar-award winning company will now have more than 50 times its previous computing power, and double the power of any industry competitor to date.

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