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DreamWorks TV shuts down

In a move to consolidate, DreamWorks Television Animation has closed down, and the direct-to-video unit has merged with the feature division. A DreamWorks spokeswoman stated, "We are currently reorganizing our animation divisions so we are all operating under one umbrella. While we have decided not to continue pursuing television animation opportunities at this time, we are continuing to develop and produce animation for both feature films and direct-to-video." The TV division, spearheaded by Jeffrey Katzenberg and Steven Spielberg, opened shop in 1996 headed by Gary Krisel and David Simon. In their short history, the group produced two series: INVASION AMERICA (WB) and STEVEN SPIELBERG PRESENTS TOONSYLVANIA (Fox Kids Network). The direct-to-video unit, launched in '98, also by Krisel and Simon, will now fall under the jurisdiction of feature animation co-heads Ann Daly and Ron Rocha. Current home video projects include JOSEPH, a sequel to THE PRINCE OF EGYPT, and a sequel to ANTZ. Currently more than two-thirds of the TV division's 50 employees have transferred to the direct-to-video unit and it is expected that only a minimal number of employees will be affected by the reorganization. As of yet, it has not been determined whether TV animation heads, Simon and Krisel, along with Bruce Cranston, Head of Development for TV Animation, and Margot Pipken, Head of Production for TV Animation, will have roles in the direct-to-video division.

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