In a monstrous $1.6 billion deal, DreamWorks SKG, the production company founded by Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg, and David Geffen, was bought out by Paramount Pictures (a division of Viacom Inc.) in an unexpected deal after eleven years of independence.
Dreamworks SKG Purchase Details
Spielberg began is immensely successful career as a young director at Universal under the watchful eye and guidance of Sid Sheinberg, Universal’s president for 22 years. At Universal, Spielberg created many of his colossal hits including “E.T.,” “Jaws,” and “Jurassic Park.” Sheinberg’s reply to deal implied little animosity saying, “I think he will always consider Universal his paternal home.”
NBC Universal was reportedly in negotiations to buy DreamWorks for the past nine months until the deal fell through and Paramount CEO Brad Grey stepped in.
Grey announced plans to increase the DreamWorks production to fourteen to sixteen films annually to include a mandated four to six live action films produced by Spielberg and Geffen. Analysts predict, however, that Spielberg will continue to work with other studios as he has always done.