Tag Archives: DreamWorks

DreamWorks Animation Q3 results

GLENDALE, Calif., Oct. 31 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ – For the third quarter of 2006, DreamWorks Animation SKG, Inc. (NYSE:DWA) reported total revenue of $55.6 million and net income of $10.5 million, or $0.10 per share on a fully diluted basis. This compares to revenue of $87.1 million and net loss of $0.7 million, or $(0.01) per share on a fully diluted basis, for the same period in 2005. The Company ended the third quarter of 2006 with $536.0 million of cash and cash equivalents.

For the period, Madagascar contributed approximately $24.1 million of revenue driven primarily by home video catalogue sales as well as a benefit due to a partial reduction of reserves established for returns and costs associated with the transition of its home video distribution. In total, the film has reached an estimated 20.4 million units shipped through the third quarter of 2006, net of actual returns and estimated future returns. Wallace and Gromit: Curse of the Were-Rabbit generated revenue of approximately $17.2 million as the film was made available in the domestic pay television market in the quarter.

Since its home video release in the first quarter of this year, the film has reached an estimated 5.1 million units shipped through the third quarter of 2006, net of actual returns and estimated future returns. Shark Tale recorded revenue of approximately $5.8 million in the quarter. Library and other titles contributed $8.5 million of revenue for the period. The Company’s distributor remained in an unrecouped position of approximately $7.1 million on the Shrek 2 title at the end of the third quarter.

The Company’s revenues for the third quarter of 2006 included a benefit resulting from the renegotiation of a vendor contract for services provided as part of Paramount’s distribution of the Company’s titles. This resulted in higher net revenue of approximately $6.4 million due to a distribution cost credit from Paramount, predominantly impacting the net revenue of the Company’s 2005 theatrical releases. The benefit resulted in $0.01 of earnings per share in the quarter on a fully diluted basis.

DreamWork’s latest release, Over the Hedge, has reached approximately $325 million in box office as of October 30, 2006 on a worldwide basis, making it the eighth highest grossing film of 2006. As expected, the Company’s distributor remains in an un-recouped position at the end of the quarter. The title contributed approximately $2.1 million in revenue to the Company in the quarter.

Looking ahead, the Company reiterated its expectation that revenue for the remainder of the year will be driven by the home video performance of Over the Hedge, which was released domestically on October 17, 2006.

The Company’s next release, Flushed Away, opens domestically in theatres on November 3, 2006. As is typical in the quarter of a film’s theatrical release, the Company does not anticipate generating significant revenue in the fourth quarter from the title as its distributor will likely not have recouped its upfront marketing and distribution costs.

"We are excited about the upcoming release of Flushed Away, our latest collaboration with Aardman Animation," stated Jeffrey Katzenberg, CEO of DreamWorks Animation. "By combining Aardman’s signature look with cutting-edge CG technology, we believe we’ve created a new visual style — and ultimately, a unique film experience."

In addition to results for the third quarter, the Company provided updates on several future projects, including DreamWorks Animation’s Puss in Boots, based on the beloved character from the Shrek franchise. Originally expected to be released as a direct-to-video title, the property is now being slated as a future theatrical release. Due to current market conditions, the Company has decided to shift away from its direct-to-video strategy in favor of new opportunities with Paramount and Nickelodeon.

"Puss in Boots is a unique creative property that has the potential to be a valuable extension of the Shrek franchise," stated Katzenberg. "We are excited to be developing this into a feature film where we think it has the greatest opportunity."

Lastly, the Company revealed its theatrical release slate for 2009 from its projects currently under development. Monsters vs. Aliens, the working title of an original concept from DreamWorks Animation, is scheduled for release in the summer of 2009. How to Train Your Dragon, based on the book by Cressida Cowell, is scheduled as the Company’s release for the 2009 fall/holiday season.

Items related to the earnings release for the third quarter of 2006 will be discussed in more detail on the Company’s third quarter 2006 earnings conference call later today.

Johnny Depp Set for ‘Sweeney Todd’

LOS ANGELES /PRNewswire/ — DreamWorks Studios announced today that Johnny Depp has been set to star and Tim Burton to direct "Sweeney Todd," the award-winning Stephen Sondheim musical thriller.

The co-production with Warner Bros. will star Johnny Depp as the titular Demon Barber of Fleet Street. Depp is currently starring in the record-breaking blockbuster, "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest."

"Sweeney Todd" marks the 6th collaboration between the actor and director. The previous Burton-Depp films have been "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," "Corpse Bride," "Ed Wood," "Edward Scissorhands" and "Sleepy Hollow."

Walter Parkes and Laurie MacDonald will partner with Richard Zanuck and John Logan to produce the screenplay adaptation which was written by Logan. Production is planned to begin early next year for a late 2007 release. Paramount will distribute for DreamWorks domestically and Warner Bros. internationally.

The Broadway production of "Sweeney Todd," with Sondheim’s music and lyrics and a book by Hugh Wheeler based on the play by Christopher Bond, opened in 1979 and won eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical. Its mix of the comic, the dramatic and the macabre held together by Sondheim’s movie-like score has had hundreds of productions throughout the world. A highly acclaimed revival is now playing in New York.

The story of "Sweeney Todd" is of a wrongfully imprisoned barber in Victorian England who sets out to seek revenge on the judge who imprisoned him. The plot is foreshadowed in the first lines of the opening number: "Attend the tale of Sweeney Todd./His skin was pale and his eye was odd./He shaved the faces of gentlemen/Who never thereafter were heard of again."

Sondheim is known in the theater for the lyrics to "West Side Story" and "Gypsy," the music and lyrics for "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum," "Company," "Follies," "A Little Night Music" and the Pulitzer Prize-winning "Sunday in the Park With George," among others, as well as the film scores of "Stavisky" and "Reds" (the latter co-written with Dave Grusin) and the Academy Award®-winning Best Original Song "Sooner or Later" from the Warren Beatty movie "Dick Tracy."

Former DreamWorks co-heads Walter Parkes and Laurie MacDonald have produced or executive produced a wide range of critically and commercially successful films, including the Oscar-winning "Gladiator," the "Men In Black" and "Ring" series, as well as "Catch Me If You Can," "Minority Report," and "The Terminal," the latter all directed by Steven Spielberg.

"Sweeney Todd" will mark Richard Zanuck’s third collaboration with DreamWorks, having produced "Deep Impact" and "Road to Perdition" for the studio. The film will also mark Zanuck’s reunion with Johnny Depp and Tim Burton with whom he produced last year’s international hit "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." Among his many films, Zanuck won a Best Picture Oscar as a producer for "Driving Miss Daisy" and has received the Academy’s Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award for consistently producing high quality motion pictures.

Tim Burton is also developing the Paramount production of "Ripley’s Believe It Or Not."

Producer/Writer John Logan’s most recent screenplays were "The Aviator" and "The Last Samurai," and he was nominated for an Oscar for his work on DreamWorks’ "Gladiator."

Montecito Raises $200 Million for 10 Picture Film Slate for DreamWorks

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 14 /PRNewswire/ — A $200 million production facility has been raised to co-finance motion pictures produced by The Montecito Picture Company. The transaction was announced by Montecito principals Tom Pollock and Ivan Reitman.

The new financing vehicle, to be called Cold Spring Picture LLC, will co-finance ten motion pictures over the next five years. Cold Spring will have a first look agreement with DreamWorks Studios, coinciding with Montecito’s new five year first look agreement with DreamWorks, a relationship which has resulted in a number of successful comedies including ROAD TRIP (2000) and OLD SCHOOL (2003). The first of the ten Cold Spring pictures, DISTURBIA, starring Shia LaBeouf, David Morse, Carrie-Anne Moss and Sarah Roemer, directed by DJ Caruso, has already completed principal photography, and will be released by DreamWorks through Paramount Pictures in 2007.

The $200 million capitalization is a combination of equity provided by Merrill Lynch and a consortium of hedge funds, together with bank debt, provided by a team of banks led by Merrill Lynch and Societe General.

Pollock and Reitman pointed out that while the agreement gives DreamWorks a first look on all Montecito and Cold Spring pictures they are free to accept projects from other major studios and to set up pictures that DreamWorks declines to co-finance.

"It is my hope to continue to create wonderful movies that will launch the film careers of a new generation of comedy talent," said Reitman.

"I’m proud of the confidence shown us by Merrill Lynch and our equity partners, as well as by Societe General," added Tom Pollock. "We are all very excited to be continuing our extremely productive six year relationship with DreamWorks."

Mike Blum, Managing Director and Head of Global Structured Finance & Investments, at Merrill Lynch, added "This deal is groundbreaking. We believe this is a unique investment opportunity to capitalize on the skills and experience of two of the most successful producers in Hollywood. The combination of 30 years of Ivan’s directing and producing, and Tom’s extensive background as an entertainment attorney, Chairman of Universal Pictures, and a Producer at Montecito are the ideal combination."

DreamWorks Co-Chairman and CEO, Stacey Snider said, "We are equally pleased about our continuing relationship with Montecito. We’ve loved working with Ivan, Tom, and all of us at DreamWorks look forward to working with their company to develop and produce films for a worldwide audience."

Deal was negotiated by Loeb & Loeb and Ziffren Brittenham with DreamWorks on behalf of Montecito and Cold Spring Pictures. The financing and banking arrangement by Sidley and Austin on behalf of Merrill Lynch and by Shepherd Mullin on behalf of Societe General and by Loeb & Loeb on behalf of Montecito and Cold Spring Pictures. The Spartan Group acted as Financial Advisor.

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