Viacom Sells DreamWorks Library for $900M

Viacom Paramount Pictures, which just bought DreamWorks in December is selling the studio's film library--Gladiator, American Beauty--to George Soros' Soros Strategic Partners and Dune Entertainment for a deal that prices the library at about $900.

Paramount will distribute the 59 titles in a five-year deal, and has "certain rights" to reacquire the library at the end of those five years. Viacom retains music publishing rights, as well as ancillary rights including merchandising and sequels to any of the films.

"By significantly reducing our capital investment, this transaction materially increases our expected return on invested capital for the DreamWorks acquisition," said Viacom Executive VP/CFO Michael Dolan. "Additionally, we retain all the strategic and operational benefits of the combination."

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.