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Headline News Spain's Filmax Opens Ani Arm

Madrid production house Filmax has formed a new animation arm entitled Filmax Animacion. The new arm will have three divisions: production services, production and distribution. Filmax plans to integrate its animation studio Bren Entertainment into this new venture. In October 2000, Filmax gained animation production-distribution house PPM Multimedia's Francisco "Paco" Rodriguez to head Bren. Rodriguez formed PPM Multimedia in 1990 and quickly transformed the small company into a major force in the Spanish market.

Headline News Former Disney Exec Blows Whistle With $20M Lawsuit

Former Walt Disney senior VP for worldwide anti-piracy, Judy Denenholz, has filed a US$20 million lawsuit, alleging she was terminated after refusing to sign a fraudulent IRS audit. The suit also alleges that Disney's assistant general counsel Peter Nolan sexually harassed Denenholz since she joined the company in 1981. The suit claims that Disney's general counsel Lou Meisinger held a grudge over legal bills before he became Disney's general counsel. In 1990, Denenholz advised Disney that Meisinger's law firm was overcharging the studio for their anti-piracy work.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, March 13, 2001

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 Disney's Go.com To Stay

Walt Disney Co. has announced that its past decision to scrap its Go.com portal has been reversed. However, the Go.com portal will be a much more pared down version with Web searches handled by former rival GoTo.com. The Go.com home page now serves as a low maintenance starting point for the Walt Disney Internet Group's other sites like Disney.com, ABC.com and Movies.com. In the formation of Go.com, Disney purchased Infoseek and their search engine. Currently, Disney is looking to sell off assets associated with Infoseek.

Headline News Czech Public Aghast Over Pokemon

Many citizens in the Czech Republic are aghast over the premiere of POKEMON on the public TV network, Slovak TV. The Slovak media council has complained that the show has a negative psychological effect on children due to its level of violence. Because the station is a public broadcaster, the council has the right to ban the program. If done, this move could destroy Slovak TV. The station is currently in dire financial straits, owing over a million dollars to various companies for purchases made over the past three years.

Headline News Harvey Sells All Of Its Classic Characters

The Harvey Entertainment Company has announced that it has signed an agreement with Classic Media, LLC, for the sale of its library of Classic Characters, including Casper, Richie Rich, Baby Huey and Little Audrey. Classic Media already owns the rights to the UPA characters Mr. Magoo and Gerald McBoing Boing. The deal, scheduled to close within 90 days, is worth US$16 million plus debts associated with the characters. This move is Harvey's attempt to liquidate its bank debts.

Headline News EM.TV Shareholders Demand $9.5M

Over 400 EM.TV shareholders are seeking an out-of-court settlement from the company for more than DM20 million (US$9.5 million) in regards to problems over EM.TV's acquisition of the Jim Henson Co. and half of the Formula One racing circuit. The investors claim that EM.TV CEO Thomas Haffa and his brother, former chief financial officer Florian Haffa, falsely represented the actual costs of the US$650 million acquisition of Henson. Moreover, the investors claim management hid key facts about the deal to buy as much as 75% of Formula One holding company SLEC.

Headline News SimEx Set To Acquire Iwerks

Toronto-based SimEx Inc., a major player in the location-based entertainment industry, has announced that it has signed a letter of intent to acquire Iwerks Entertainment Inc., a leading special venue production firm. SimEx will pay $0.63 per share for Iwerks, which values the deal at approximately $2.2 million. Once the deal is completed, Iwerks will keep its name and continue to work out of its Burbank, California offices, under its current team.

Headline News AOL Time Warner Combines TV Groups

In yet another consolidation move, AOL Time Warner has combined all of its TV operations under one roof. As a result, the WB Network's CEO Jamie Kellner will become the new CEO and chairman of an expanded Turner Broadcasting. He will oversee the WB, TBS, TNT, CNN and Cartoon Network. He replaces Terence McGuirk, who will continue as vice chairman and will assist Kellner in his transition. Kellner will relocate to Atlanta. What does this move have in store for animation?

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, March 6, 2001

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 Pentamedia Acquires Improvision

India-based Pentamedia Graphics has agreed to buy California-based movie production company Improvision for US$19.8 million in stock. Pentamedia first teamed with Improvision as co-production and distribution partners for the animated film SINBAD: BEYOND THE VEIL OF MISTS. Currently, a sequel to that 3D motion-capture film is in production. Improvision's purchase will "help strengthen Pentamedia's pre-production and post-production skills and also its distribution reach in the United States," the company said.

Headline News Disney Dishes Out $350M For Winnie The Pooh

The Walt Disney Co. has purchased the rights to Winnie the Pooh for an amazing $350 million. Former rights holders Westminster School and the Garrick Club will receive $88 million each and the Royal Literary Society will gain $132 million. Disney first licensed the rights to Winnie in the 1960s and has been paying twice-yearly royalties to the owners. Disney will hold the copyright until it expires in 2026. The last relative of POOH creator A. A. Milne to hold a share in the copyright was Christopher Robin Milne.

Headline News Heavy.com Taps $3M In Funds

Swimming against the recent tidal wave of dotcom disasters, Heavy.com has announced a new US$3 million round of financing. In addition, Heavy has announced that David Pachter has been named president and COO. Prior to Heavy, Pachter served as senior VP of business development for Interactive Video Technologies, a streaming video solutions firm. "We feel extremely fortunate to have attracted a person of David's caliber," co-CEO David Carson said.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, February 27, 2001

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 BKN Unionizes, DIC In Contract Talks

The Motion Picture Screen Cartoonists, Local 839 IATSE, has won their organizing election at Bohbot Kids Network (BKN), a German-owned animation studio with offices in Los Angeles. The ballot tally was 38 in favor of union representation versus 3 against, with six challenged ballots. The original vote took place in June 1999, but was delayed by BKN attorneys' legal challenges over the election procedures. However, in late January 2001, the National Labor Relations Board overruled BKN's suit. The union hopes to negotiate a contract with BKN in the near future.

Headline News Imax Lays Off 130 In Restructuring

By Rick DeMott | Wednesday, February 21, 2001 at 12:00am

Imax Corp. has announced that due to a corporate restructuring it will lay off 130 of its 1,000 employees. The restructuring comes as a result of several theater-chains' recent bankruptcies, which has lowered the demand for large screen films. The company will consolidate its sound and projection systems manufacturing at its facilities in Mississauga, Ontario and will scale down film production at its studio in Birmingham, Alabama. Imax will take a first quarter 2001 loss as a result of restructuring costs.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, February 20, 2001

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 Appeals Court Upholds Copyright Extension

The U.S. federal appeals court has upheld a 1998 ruling, which extended the length of copyrighted material another two decades. In a 2-1 ruling, the three judge panel ruled that Congress does have the right to extend the time of a copyright. The arguments against the ruling were brought forth by a group of individuals and companies dealing with public domain works stating that the extension infringed on their First Amendment rights.

Headline News Stan Lee Media Files For Bankruptcy

Stan Lee Media, Inc. has announced that it is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. In a statement, CEO and president Kenneth Williams said, "After looking at all of the available options, management and the board of directors concluded that the best way to maximize the company's value is to seek to sell the company in a Chapter 11 proceeding. As previously announced, the company has been reviewing strategic alternatives for the company since mid-December, and in conjunction with this review has had discussions with a number of potential buyers and strategic partners.

Headline News Illegal Pac-Man Games On The Web Leads To Lawsuit

By Rick DeMott | Thursday, February 15, 2001 at 12:00am

Twelve video game companies have filed a joint suit against four individuals accusing them of offering unauthorized versions of such games as PAC-MAN and DONKEY KONG on the Web. The suit seeks to shut down sites operated by Dasheill Ponce De Leon of Houston, John Sterling of Beaumont, Texas, Byron Beck of Monrovia, California and Kuei Lin Lo of Amherst, Massachusetts. The complaint also seeks monetary damages of US$150,000 for each copyright infringement.

Headline News Cinar Extends Bank Credit

By Rick DeMott | Thursday, February 15, 2001 at 12:00am

Cinar Corporation has entered into an agreement with its banks to extend its credit line until October 15, 2001. Of US$24 million previously outstanding, half of the amount is still with standing. In certain circumstances prepayments will be required prior to October 2001. The plagued children's producer also announced that it would release its unaudited 2000 financial statements by March 31, 2001. "Cinar continues to have a strong balance sheet.

Headline News Swedes' Push Harder For Euro Ban On Kids' Ads

On February 13, 2001, the European Union organized in Stockholm for an expert seminar on Children and Young People in the New Media Landscape. One of the main topics in the discussions was Sweden's European initiative for banning television commercials aimed at children. The European Union has a rotating presidency system, where every member country controls the administration for a half-year term. As current leader, Sweden has placed the matter of TV ads on the top of the EU agenda for this term.

Headline News Animation Stock Ticker For Tuesday, February 13, 2001

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 Z.com Closes Up Shop

Add one more name to the long list of the dotcom dearly departed. Z.com has announced that on Friday, February 16, 2001 they will be closing their doors for good. This move comes only a week after Icebox.com closed down an entertainment site that was in talks to merge with Z.com. The entertainment Website had high-profile backers such as Basic Entertainment, 3 Arts Entertainment, IdeaLab!, producer Jerry Bruckheimer and Maverick Records partner Guy Oseary. The demise of the company is a result of declining ad revenue and a weak syndication market.

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