Tag Archives: Distribution

Netflix, Disney Announce Feature Film Agreement

Walt Disney Studios

Walt Disney Studios

Netflix Inc. and The Walt Disney Company announced Tuesday a new multi-year licensing agreement that will make Netflix the exclusive United States subscription television service for first-run animated and live-action feature films from The Walt Disney Studios.

Beginning with its 2016 theatrically released feature films, new Disney, Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, Marvel Studios and Disneynature titles will be made available for Netflix members to watch instantly in the pay TV window on multiple platforms, including television, tablets, computers and mobile phones. Also included in the agreement are high-profile Disney direct-to-video new releases, which will be made available on Netflix starting in 2013.

Separately, Disney and Netflix have reached agreement on a multi-year catalog deal that brought to U.S. Netflix members Tuesday such beloved Disney movies as the animated Dumbo, Pocahontas and Alice in Wonderland.

“Disney and Netflix have shared a long and mutually beneficial relationship and this deal will bring to our subscribers, in the first pay TV window, some of the highest-quality, most imaginative family films being made today,” said Ted Sarandos, chief content officer at Netflix. “It’s a bold leap forward for Internet television, and we are incredibly pleased and proud this iconic family brand is teaming with Netflix to make it happen.”

“With this cutting-edge agreement, we are thrilled to take our highly valued relationship with Netflix to the next level by adding Disney’s premier films to their programming lineup,” said Disney-ABC Domestic Television president Janice Marinelli. “Netflix continues to meet the demands of its subscribers in today’s rapidly evolving digital landscape, and we are delighted that they will have much earlier access to our top-quality and entertaining slate,” she continued.

Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Cartoon Zebras From South Africa Get Distributor

Khumba

Khumba

South Africa’s Triggerfish Studios’ 3D animated feature Khumba has been picked up for North American distribution by Millennium Entertainment. The film has just completed production. Khumba is a half-stripped zebra who sets out on a daring quest to earn his stripes.

Khumba was co-written by Anthony Silverston (Zambezia) and Raffaella Delle Donne (Zambezia), with Lion King writer Jonathan Roberts. Anthony Silverston also directed the feature, and Stuart Forrest of Triggerfish Animation (Zambezia) produced it. The film stars Jake T. Austin (Wizards of Waverly Place, Rio, The Perfect Game), AnnaSophia Robb (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Bridge to Terebithia, Soul Surfer) and Loretta Devine (Crash, I am Sam, Grey’s Anatomy).

When Khumba, a half stripped zebra is blamed for the lack of rain by the rest of his insular, superstitious herd, he embarks on a daring quest to earn his stripes. In his search for the legendary waterhole in which the first zebras got their stripes, Khumba meets a quirky range of characters and teams up with an unlikely duo: an overprotective wildebeest, MamaV and Bradley, a self-obsessed ostrich. But before he can reunite with his herd, Khumba will have to come face to face with Phango, a scary leopard who controls the waterholes and terrorizes all the animals in the Great Karoo.

“Millennium Entertainment is eager to earn its stripes with the lovable ‘Khumba’, which marks the company’s first venture in the world of animation,” said Millennium Entertainment CEO Bill Lee. “We look forward to connecting the film and its endearing cast of animals with the whole family.”

Stuart Forrest, Triggerfish Animation Studios’ CEO stated, “This is another exciting step-up for Triggerfish Animation Studios as we continue to break new ground in establishing our company as Africa’s leading entertainment franchise. We are thrilled to be working with Millennium and feel our film is in good hands with a talented group behind the theatrical release.”

Deal was negotiated during the AFM between Millennium Entertainment’s VP of Acquisitions, Tristen Tuckfield and international sales agent Cinema Management Group’s President, Edward Noeltner whose company also handled all international sales on Triggerfish’s first 3D animated feature Zambezia.

Brasil Animado 3D Cartoon Movie Offered for Distribution

Brasil Animado

Brasil Animado

The stereoscopic “Brasil Animado 3D” is among the slate of feature films from the acquisitions team at ITN Distribution Inc. which will be offered at the 2012 American Film Market, taking place from October 31 to November 7 at the Loews Santa Monica Beach hotel.

This year’s films are a mix of high-concept independents in a variety of genres, including animation, horror, thriller, drama, romance, war, action, family and sci-fi.

In the 80-minute Brasil Animado 3D, Stress is a businessman who is always looking for a new investment opportunity. Relax is a filmmaker who has been trying to get Stress to invest in his projects.

One day, Relax sets up for a meeting under the great pink jequitibá, the oldest tree in Brazil. Stress likes the idea, especially because he sees how profitable it could be if he charged visitors to see the tree. The problem is that neither knows where it is. Therefore, they embark in a journey throughout Brazil searching for it.

ITN will be conducting sales for territories worldwide in Loews 705. ITN Distribution, Inc. is a leading independent film distribution company that specializes in high-quality, star driven independent films for the international and domestic TV, VOD, DVD and theatrical markets.

ITN releases 24 films per year with ITN’s direct connection to all major retailers and rentals in North America, such as Redbox, NetFlix, Wal-Mart, Blockbuster, Target and Video-On-Demand. ITN produces, distributes and acquires films worldwide.

“I am always thrilled to have a presence at AFM and expect business to be very brisk at our office,” said ITN president Stuart Alson. “With independent film soaring to new levels, the demand for our film library is significantly higher this year. As always, our team’s objective is to negotiate and close the best possible deals with key buyers from around the world.”

A full catalog of ITN titles and trailers can be viewed at itndistribution.com.

DreamWorks Animation and Technicolor Partner On Distribution Deal

DreamWorks Animation SKG

DreamWorks Animation SKG

In a major strange bedfellows pairing, DreamWorks Animation and Technicolor announce a joint venture in a content distribution deal. Their new company- called M-Go- will be pushing out content digitally. But not just DWA’s content… the agreement announced Tuesday are with NBCUniversal, Paramount Pictures, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox and Warner Bros. Digital Distribution.

The new M-Go service will be pre-loaded on consumer electronics from Intel, Samsung and Vizio, and is scheduled to launch later this year. M-Go will also be available as a free service at www.mgo.com. M‐Go will also offer UltraViolet compatibility.

“The deals will enable consumers to rent or purchase day & date new release films, catch-up television and back catalog film and TV shows,” the company said. “M‐Go centralizes viewing in one easy place, bridging the divide between viewing platforms, content sources, delivery technologies and devices.”

John Batter, CEO of M‐Go, said: “Partners choose us because of the value M-­Go brings to the marketplace by providing massive amounts of quality film and TV content on the devices people already use.”

M-Go currently uses the MediaNavi search and discovery platform for cloud-based services for consumers. The app-based service was launched in January. The service won the CSI award in the TV Everywhere / Multi-screen Video category earlier this month. The CSI Awards are one of the most comprehensive and competitive technology awards in the world. They reward technical and product marketing excellence in the cable, satellite, terrestrial broadcasting, IPTV, online/internet video and mobile TV sectors.

GKids plans to distribute 4 Oscar-qualifying films

Oscar Statuette, Academy Awards

Oscar Statuette, Academy Awards

New York-based animation distributor GKids announced Tuesday that it plans to give runs to four films in order to qualify them for this year’s Oscars.

Three of the four are French features: Zarafa (Pathe), Le Chat du Rabbin (The Rabbi’s Cat) (TF1) and Le Tableau (The Painting) (Rezo). The fourth is Kokurikozaka Kara (From Up on Poppy Hill), from Japan’s Studio Ghibli.

Last year, GKids distributed two Oscar-nominated features: Chico & Rita, from Spain’s Fernando Trueba and set in the milieau of Cuban jazz, and French spy tale Une Vie De Chat (A Cat In Paris).

The four new releases will raise the number of Oscar-qualifying films to 15, which means that the number of nominees for Best Animated Feature will automatically increase from three to four. If just one qualifying animated film is released, the number of Oscar nominees in the category will reach five.

Already, six studio films have received Oscar-qualifying runs: Universal’s Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax, Sony/Aardman’s The Pirates: Band of Misfits, DreamWorks Animation’s Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted, Disney/Pixar’s Brave, Blue Sky/20th Century Fox’s Ice Age: Continental Drift and Laika/Focus’ ParaNorman.

Scheduled for release later this year are Sony Pictures Animation’s Hotel Transylvania, Tim Burton’s stop-motion Frankenweenie and Rich Moore’s Wreck-It Ralph from Disney, and DWA’s William Joyce adaptation Rise of the Guardians.

A Liar’s Autobiography: The Untrue Story of Monty Python’s Graham Chapman, with contributions by over a dozen different animation studios, is also scheduled to receive a qualifying run.

The Oscars have had a Best Animated Feature category for 11 years. There has been a field of five nominees three times — twice in the last three years.

With this looking like the Oscar pack, do you have any favorites, or guesses as to which film will take it all this year at the Oscars???

DWA rejects Paramount offer to extend distribution

DreamWorks Animation SKG

DreamWorks Animation SKG

The board of DreamWorks Animation has turned down an offer by Paramount to extend its current distribution agreement for one more year.

Paramount’s deal with DWA expires at the end of 2012.

The distributor had offered to keep releasing DWA films for an 8% fee. However, Paramount wanted to receive more in the future, and DWA wants to pay a lower commission.

A spokeswoman for DreamWorks Animation declined to comment.

Last month, Paramount head Brad Grey announced that his studio would start its own animation division.

Although DWA is said to be looking at other distribution options, “nobody has been pitched to do distribution” for the studio, The Hollywood Reporter quoted an unnamed insider as saying. The animation firm “is not quaking in its boots going ‘Paramount is the only game in town'” because DreamWorks can deliver fees on films that usually gross in the hundreds of millions of dollars, the source added.

However, Warner Bros. isn’t interested in distributing DWA movies, “knowledgeable people who were not authorized to speak publicly on the matter” told the Los Angeles Times.

Meanwhile, the Hollywood Reporter source belittled Paramount’s announcement of an animation division, deriding it as a plan “to do low-rent movies.”