GLENDALE, CA — In the words of Kung Fu Panda’s Po, “There is no charge for awesomeness… or attractiveness.” But, apparently there is a price tag for the “awesomeness” of DreamWorks. And the price appears to be worth it to Comcast.
Discussion has been perculating for the past few days that Comcast is in talks to acquire DreamWorks Animation. And the price being thrown around? Initially it was around $3 billion, which some reported to be 30 percent over current market value. But in a press release just issued by Comcast, which confirmed the news, put the price at $3.8 billion.
Comcast is no stranger to the family entertainment business. It has Comcast Cable and NBCUniversal – which means its ever popular Universal Parks and Resorts. Its Illumination Entertainment made the Minions famous – and successful – with the Despicable Me franchise.
"The studio will become part of the Universal Filmed Entertainment Group, which includes Universal Pictures, Fandango, and NBCUniversal Brand Development," the statement said.
In 2004, DreamWorks Animation, run by Jeffrey Katzenberg, was spun off from Steven Spielberg’s DreamWorks Studio. Still, it has produced a number of hits and popular franchises, including Shrek, Madagascar, and Kung Fu Panda. It also produces television animation. Despite the big box-office numbers many of its films received, some films had lower-than-expected sales, leading to layoffs.
The deal must be approved by antitrust regulators. The sale, if it goes through, would boost Comcast’s standing, making it a rival to the Walt Disney Company. The acquisition is expected by the end of the year.