Pixar dumps Disney
Studio headed by Steve Jobs says it will seek other distributors for its films starting in 2006.
January 29, 2004: 4:45 PM EST
NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Pixar Animation Studios Inc. said Thursday it ended talks with Walt Disney Co. to extend a five-picture deal for Disney to distribute Pixar films.
Pixar said it would begin talks with other companies to distribute its films starting in 2006.
"After ten months of trying to strike a deal with Disney, we're moving on," Pixar CEO Steve Jobs said in a statement. "We've had a great run together -- one of the most successful in Hollywood history -- and it's a shame that Disney won't be participating in Pixar's future successes."
The move was a clear setback to Disney, which reaped a financial and critical bonanza from the partnership and has struggled with its own strategy for animation. Officials at Disney were not immediately available for comment.
Pixar (PIXR: Research, Estimates) stock jumped in after-hours trading, according to Reuters, while Disney (DIS: Research, Estimates) stock sank more than 4 percent.
Pixar said its five films so far -- including "Toy Story", "Monsters Inc." and "Finding Nemo" -- have taken in $2.5 billion at the worldwide box office and sold more than 150 million DVDs and videos.
Disney can distribute two additional films under the existing pact, with Pixar getting its share of the profits. Disney also has the right to finance and produce sequels to the films if Pixar declines to co-finance and produce them under the current agreement