back to article Shrek studio looks to Toshiba to untie HD DVD bond

DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg has confirmed the rumours: the company was "well-compensated" for its decision to offer movies only on HD DVD - a format it will continue to back, despite Toshiba's decision to abandon it. Katzenberg, speaking to news agency Reuters, didn't reveal how much money his company had …


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  1. Lee Sexton

    Maybe I'm missing something

    But surely admitting that you gave money to another company to only sell your product is against competition law? While Intel and M$ etc etc are all tied in legal battles over this very same issue, one company has just admitted they received a bribe. Surely they should now both be taken to task?

    I have no doubt Sony have done the same, but you wont see them admitting it.....

  2. Frank Bough

    So Depressing

    This is what happens when you think short term. What a waste of a year.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    End of May

    Only till end of May apparently. Otherwise they have to hand some money back.

  4. Paul van der Lingen

    oh well. So much for that

    With Sony-of-the-rootkit-fame having won this round, I think I'll be sitting this round of the HD farce out.

    Can't help wondering where we'd all be if microsoft had bundled HD-DVD with each xbox tho - the buggers.

  5. David

    That's messed up.

    I really enjoy most of Dream Works movies. If it's Toshiba's call, could they possibly be held back from distributing? I know it's a lot of money in the deal but at this point someone really needs to just accept the fact that Blu-ray is officially the new standard and move on.

  6. Ben Bufton

    It's obvious...

    ... they just want to keep the money. ;)

  7. Eponymous Cowherd

    Re:That's messed up.

    ***"I really enjoy most of Dream Works movies."***

    Yes, the actual *movies* are pretty good.

    Its just a shame that DreamWorks are one of the worst offenders when it comes to forced trailers (on DVD at least).


    How do HD-DVD and Blu-Ray compare in this respect. i.e. the ability of producers to lock, block and generally control how end users use the product they have bought and paid for?

  8. Paul Bruneau

    Sony Rootkit? drop it already

    OK someone in sony music had a really bad idea. They don't do it anymore, the marketplace spoke and sony listened. What do you want, blood?

  9. David Rollinson

    Re. Maybe I'm missing something

    "But surely admitting that you gave money to another company to only sell your product is against competition law?"

    Toshiba didn't give anyone money to "only sell their product"; they gave money as part on an agreement on technology usage, to ensure exclusivity. It's not illegal, companies do this all the time, so that they can "assist" companies to buy into their technology. The example here is Toshiba paying for production facilities etc. so that the studio doesn't have to assume all the financial risk of setting up with a new technology.

    The fact that HD-DVD failed shows that the studio was right to get some financial assistance from Toshiba; at least they won't be completely out of pocket on this.

    Without financial assistance like this from technology providers, companies won't be eager to commit to a new technology, resulting in very slow uptake.

    It's just normal business practice.

    But you'd have to wonder why Dream Works' lawyers didn't put an escape clause in the contract in the case of Toshiba ending HD-DVD production.

  10. Malcolm Weir

    @Lee Sexton

    There's no anticompetitive issue here. The agreement between Tosh and SKG Dreamworks would have been tied up as a technology license (for the HD-DVD tech) and a marketing agreement (for the HD-DVD only bit: SKG agreed to promote HD-DVD in return for cash).

    The car companies do things like this all the time: dealers can claim lots of cash from the manufacturer to cover things like advertising and showroom stocking, but ONLY if they agree not to sell or promote competitors.

    It's really no different from exclusivity deals in which a given company is granted the right to sell a product (e.g. a phone) in a given market (e.g. the UK)....


  11. Albert

    Different to MS

    Microsoft gave preferential pricing if you paid a license based on the number of systems shipped and not the number of systems shipped with Microsoft software installed, so for an OEM to include an alternative OS they would still have to pay MS.

    Exclusive deals are normal promotional/marketing activities.

    Just look at the iPhone

    Nothing illegal there.

  12. Giles Jones Gold badge

    One thing's for sure

    Toshiba doesn't mind either way. They are manufacturing Sony PS3 components now.

  13. b166er


    It's not just rootkits with Sony though, is it?

    Exploding laptop batteries, Liksang closure, ridiculously overpriced cosmetics on their electronic goods, bet you've got an iPhone too ;p (unless you're a true Sony die-hard in which case a SonyEricsson)

  14. Kevin Kenny

    Payola by another name

    Isn't it?

  15. Monkey

    Stay on the point for idiots!

    This is an article about Dreamworks getting paid a load of cash and wanting to hold onto it, meaning they can't just jump. It's good old fashioned wanting cake and eating it, and if you read it properly and intelligently any criticism really should be levelled at Dreamworks for good old fashioned greed.

    b166er and Paul, turning this into an anti Sony rant is bloody ridiculous. Not to mention just plain childish. Go away and leave the adults to their conversations and big words and carry on with your colouring books.

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