The Walt Disney Studios has agreed to enter into an exclusive long-term distribution arrangement with filmmaker and DreamWorks Studios co-founder Steven Spielberg, and partner Stacey Snider, chief executive officer of DreamWorks, to distribute all upcoming live-action motion pictures produced by DreamWorks under their partnership with Reliance BIG Entertainment, part of The Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group, it was announced today by Dick Cook, chairman of The Walt Disney Studios.
Under the terms of this arrangement, Disney will handle distribution and marketing for approximately six DreamWorks films each year. The first DreamWorks motion picture to be released under the Touchstone Pictures banner is scheduled to hit theaters in 2010.
DreamWorks principals Spielberg and Snider partnered with Reliance BIG Entertainment last fall to form a new motion picture company. In addition to being a partner in DreamWorks, Reliance will also distribute the new company's projects in India.
Commenting on the announcement, Cook said, "We're both thrilled and honored to be marketing and distributing all of DreamWorks' signature upcoming live-action motion pictures, and to begin a new relationship with such respected colleagues as Steven, Stacey, and their creative team at DreamWorks. Steven has made some of the biggest and most loved films of all-time, and continues to be one of the great icons of our industry. Stacey has an impeccable reputation and a phenomenal track record for making a wide variety of quality films. Their motion pictures will be the perfect compliment to the already robust slate of Disney and Touchstone films being made by Oren Aviv and his team."
Bob Iger, president and CEO, The Walt Disney Company, added, "We are tremendously pleased to join forces with Steven Spielberg, whose artistic vision and commitment to quality filmmaking are legendary," said Robert A. Iger, president and CEO, The Walt Disney Company. "DreamWorks has had a great creative and commercial track record under the leadership of Steven and Stacey Snider and I am delighted they're now associated with Disney.
Steven Spielberg said, "Disney is the birthplace of imagination and has always been as close to the worldwide audience as any company ever has. I am so pleased that industry leaders like Bob Iger and Dick Cook reached out to become our distribution partner. This is a major step forward for us and Reliance."
Stacey Snider added, "Under Bob Iger and Dick Cook's leadership, the Walt Disney Company represents the highest standard of quality in our industry. Everyone at DreamWorks is thrilled to be embarking upon this new and exciting partnership and we look forward to our future with their great team."
About The Walt Disney Studios
The Walt Disney Studios is a unit of The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) and produces and distributes motion pictures under the following banners: Walt Disney Pictures(which include live-action movies, animated feature films from Walt Disney Animation Studios and Pixar Animation Studios) as well as Touchstone Pictures, Hollywood Pictures and Miramax Films. Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures International serves as the Studio's international distribution arm. Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment distributes Disney and other film titles to the rental and sell-through home entertainment markets. Disney Theatrical Group is among the world's most successful commercial theatre enterprises producing or licensing live entertainment events that reach a global annual audience of more than 20 million people in more than 40 countries, and the Disney Music Group distributes original music and motion picture soundtracks under its three record labels: Walt Disney Records, Hollywood Records and Lyric Street Records.
About DreamWorks Studios
Steven Spielberg and Stacey Snider and The Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group announced the formation of a new motion picture company which will be led by Spielberg and Snider. The new company is a continuation of DreamWorks Studios which was formed in 1994 by Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg, and David Geffen. The company won three consecutive Best Picture Academy Awards with AMERICAN BEAUTY, GLADIATOR and A BEAUTIFUL MIND (both co-produced with Universal). Among the company's other successes have been such films as SAVING PRIVATE RYAN (co-produced with Paramount), THE RING, MINORITY REPORT (co-produced with 20th Century Fox), WAR OF THE WORLDS, DREAMGIRLS and TRANSFORMERS (all co-produced with Paramount). Snider joined DreamWorks Studios in 2006 as Co-Chairman and CEO. Snider has overseen the company's business strategy as well as the creative and financial aspects of all film development and production.
About Reliance BIG Entertainment
Reliance BIG Entertainment Ltd. (RBEL) (www.rbe.co.in
) is the flagship media and entertainment arm of Indian conglomerate, Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group (R-ADAG), (www.relianceada.com
) with significant presence in film entertainment (film production, distribution, and exhibition), broadcasting and new media ventures.
With investments over USD 1 billion in its Filmed Entertainment business RBEL's motion picture brand BIG Pictures has built a formidable film production slate in Hindi, English & other Indian languages, which it markets & distributes worldwide.
In Hollywood, BIG Pictures has development silos with Nicolas Cage's Saturn Productions, Jim Carrey's JC 23 Entertainment, George Clooney's Smokehouse Productions, Chris Columbus' 1492 Pictures, Tom Hank's Playtone Productions, Brad Pitt's Plan B Entertainment, Jay Roach's Everyman Pictures Brett Ratner's Rat Entertainment and Julia Roberts' Red Om Films.