Universal Pictures U.K. will offer Peter Jacksons KING KONG and 34 other Universal movies on April 10 on a download-to-own basis, as part of a new broadband delivery model, various trades reported. The service allows viewers to download a Universal movie on the same day as the DVD release, allowing them to own the download permanently and watch it on a home computer or portable device.
Tagged With: Universal
Luxology Llc., the creators of modo, a leading subdivision surface and polygonal 3D modeling platform, announced the immediate availability of a universal binary version of modo for Intel-based Macintosh computers. Used by Apple to conduct iMac performance benchmarks, modos universal binary version boasts more than twice the speed when running on iMacs that use Intel Core Duo technology, and performs up to five times faster than previous top-of-the-line PowerBooks when testing the rendering speed of the modo 201 beta version.
To celebrate the DVD release of King Kong on March 28, 2006, SCIFI.com will host the world premiere of KING KONG'S SKULL ISLAND, a fascinating look at the unforgettable setting of three-time Academy Award-winning picture on March 18. SCI FI Channel will broadcast the featurette, beginning March 21, making the website and the cable network the only places audiences can experience this intriguing behind-the-scenes look at KING KONG before the release of the two-disc special edition DVD.
Universal Studio has named Marc Shmuger chairman, and David Linde co-chairman, Universal Pictures, effective immediately.
Vivendi Universal Games (VU Games) has launched the SCARFACE: THE WORLD IS YOURS Videogame Soundtrack Talent Search," a nationwide talent contest running on MySpace.com that will reward the best unsigned music talent in North America with the chance to have a song featured in the upcoming SCARFACE videogame and the opportunity to perform in front of music and videogame industry leaders at a major concert event in Hollywood. The nomination process is now open at www.myspace.com/scarfacegame.
The Studio Tour at Universal Studios Hollywood announced new enhancements for spring 2006, including new attractions showcasing THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS: TOKYO DRIFT and KING KONG, as well as the opportunity to see more working TV and movie sets than ever before, including sets from CROSSING JORDAN and the top-rated CSI: CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION. The enhancements represent the most sweeping changes made to the Studio Tour in more than a decade and the greatest number of new additions to the park since the first trams rolled along the landmark Universal backlot in 1964.
The Quigley Corp. announced that it has partnered with Universal Pictures for a Cold-Eeze promotion tied to CURIOUS GEORGE, the new 2D animated film that opened in the U.S. on Feb. 10, 2006. Promotion activities include a sweepstakes and a self-liquidating offer that launched with an ad in PARENTING MAGAZINE in January.
PBS KIDS has committed to airing 30 half-hour episodes of CURIOUS GEORGE, the animated preschool television series based on the children's classic book. William H. Macy will narrate the series, which is in production by Universal Home Ent. Prods. (UHEP), Imagine Ent. and WGBH Boston and targeted to launch on PBS KIDS in the fall of 2006.
Universal Pictures has acquired Don Winston's supernatural spec script, OUR FAMILY TROUBLES, and will develop the drama under a new name as a starring vehicle for Reese Witherspoon, Variety reported.
Witherspoon and her Type A Films partner Jennifer Simpson are set to produce it. Universal svp Holly Bario will oversee the film.
Universal has hired Chris Morgan (FAST AND FURIOUS: TOKYO DRIFT) to adapt Dan Brereton and James Hudnalls comicbook THE PSYCHO, reports VARIETY.
Set in a world where an illegal drug can give people superpowers or death, the story follows a rogue CIA agent who risks his sanity to become a "psycho" as a way to rescue his girlfriend and expose a political conspiracy.
David Engel will produce for Circle of Confusion, with partners Lawrence Mattis and Jason Lust exec producing. Universal production vp Jeff Kirschenbaum will shepherd the film.
To build and enhance its production efforts, Universal Studios Home Ent. Family Prods. (USHEFP) has promoted Ellen Cockrill to svp, animation production and Patti Jackson to svp, live action production.
Jackson will continue to oversee the development and production of live-action family fare, while Cockrill will supervise all animated series and movies for the group. They both report to Glenn Ross, gm/evp, USHEFP and will be based at the studioâs Universal City headquarters.
This month Dr. Toon plays the “What If” game to see how the world of animation would be different if in an alternative reality Dick Tracy was an animated star, Bob Clampett lived longer or Walt Disney never lost Oswald the Rabbit.
Bruce Campbell has been upped to evp, business development for NBC Universal, replacing Brandon Burgess, who resigned as evp, business development & International Channels at NBC Universal and will join Paxson Communications Corp. as ceo.
The NBC Universal Entertainment Associate Program is now accepting new candidates for the 2006 class that offers career development opportunities for external and internal applicants interested in creative entertainment programming.
Jeff Zucker, president, NBC Universal Television Group, said, "We are extremely proud of the Entertainment Associate Program and the top creative executives it has produced throughout the years and we look forward to recruiting talented future programmers for our 2006 class of Entertainment Associates."
Universal Pictures became the third major movie studio to support digital distribution with Christie/AIX, following similar agreements with Twentieth Century Fox and The Walt Disney Co.s Buena Vista Pictures.
Universal will make its future feature films available to the DCI-compliant digital projection systems deployed by Christie/AIX, the subsidiary of Access Integrated Technologies Inc. (AccessIT), which is launching a nationwide rollout of 4,000 systems. Christie/AIX expects to install the first 150 systems in multiple exhibitor locations by Dec. 31.
DreamWorks has called off its talks with NBC Universal to buy the independent powerhouse, reports the trades. On Sept. 26, 2005, after two months of exclusive talks between the studios, DreamWorks founder and chief negotiator David Geffen walked away from the table when GE and Universal tried to renegotiate the price after previously settling on a price of around $1 billion.
Beth Minehart has been upped from svp, international integration and planning, to svp, international on-demand licensing for NBC Universal Television Distribution. Minehart will oversee on-demand licensing for NBC Universal's product outside of the U.S. and Canada. She will focus on driving significant revenue growth in the burgeoning on-demand arena, including pay-per-view, video-on-demand and subscription-on-demand through traditional and new platforms including cable, satellite, digital terrestrial television, Internet and mobile.
SCI FI Channel continues to test the boundaries of imagination with WHAT IF, a speculative future project that poses intriguing scenarios of alternate realities. The program, from NBC Universal Television Studio in association with New Line Television, asks... What if a moment in time could change the world forever?
The complete first season of BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, Sci Fi Channel's action-packed epic, arrives on DVD Sept. 20, in Dolby 5.1 for the first time, just as the show's SEASON TWO finale airs on Sept. 23. The five-disc set (Universal Studios Home Ent, $59.98) contains more than 12 hours of content, including both the complete dramatic 13-episode season of the Hugo Award-winning show and the four-hour, TV mini-series that launched the 2003 series juggernaut.
With Jim Carrey declining to reprise his role in a BRUCE ALMIGHTY sequel, Universal has tapped the original films co-star Steve Carell to reprise his role as Bruces anchorman nemesis, giving him a mission to build a new ark in preparation for second Great Flood, according to VARIETY. Titled EVAN ALMIGHTY, the film will garner THE 40-YEAR-OLD VIRGIN star close to $5 million. Thats 10 times what he earned for VIRGIN.
Fox and Universal have finalized their deal with Microsoft to turn hit videogame HALO into a feature film for release summer 2007, according to VARIETY. As part of the deal, the studios will dole out $5 million against 10% of the gross to the house that Bill Gates built.
Universal will handle production and domestic distribution with Fox covering foreign distribution and will split revenues 50/50.
Groove Games announced it has inked an agreement with Universal Studios Consumer Products Group to publish an interactive game based on Universal Pictures and Atmosphere Entertainment MM's' GEORGE A. ROMERO'S LAND OF THE DEAD, which hit theatres on June 24, 2005.
Universal and THE BOURNE SUPREMACY director Paul Greengrass will make 9/11 inspired feature, FLIGHT 93 with production set to start October 1, according to VARIETY. Working Title Films partners Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner will produce.
The $15 million film will run in realtime chronicling the takeoff and hijacking of United Airlines Flight 93 by terrorists. The drama will follow the discovery of the passengers that other planes had been hijacked and crashed into buildings and their decision to take over the plane themselves.
Veteran production exec Jon Gordon has been named president of production, Universal Pictures, joining recently named president of production Donna Langley. The two execs will work in tandem, overseeing the development and production of the studios motion pictures. Langley and Gordon will both report directly to Stacey Snider, chairman Universal Pictures. Gordon, who is currently co-president of production at Miramax Films, will start with Universal in October.
Marking the first major milestone for Universal's newly formed family entertainment label, Universal Studios Home Ent. Family Prods. (USHEFP) announced that it has commenced production on 26 episodes of a new animated TV series, THE LAND BEFORE TIME. The series is slated to debut on Cartoon Network in 2007 and will be subsequently distributed on DVD by Universal.