Disney and Spielberg's Dreamworks sign deal

Los Angeles, Feb 10 (DPA) Steven Spielberg's Dreamworks Studios has signed a long-term distribution deal with Walt Disney Studios, the companies confirmed.

Monday's deal comes after Spielberg signed a huge financing deal last year with Indian media conglomerate Reliance, and after a previous distribution deal with Universal Studios fell through because of the credit crisis.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the new pact calls for Disney to receive some eight percent of the gross box office receipts of the Dreamworks movies. In return Disney, under its Touchstone banner will handle distribution and marketing for approximately six Dreamworks films each year. The first title is set to hit theaters in 2010.

The deal had been widely expected after the breakdown of the Universal agreement, with industry insiders saying that Spielberg's narrative-heavy style was a good fit for Disney's family-friendly ethos.

"We're both thrilled and honoured to be marketing and distributing all of DreamWorks' signature upcoming live-action motion pictures," Disney chairman Dick Cook said in a statement. "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."

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