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Paramount Pictures strikes film distribution deal with Marvel Comics

UPI News Service, 04/28/2005 

Paramount Pictures has struck a deal to distribute Marvel Comics-produced films, Daily Variety said Thursday.

With many of its premiere characters already assigned to other studios -- "Spider-Man" at Sony, "Iron Man" at New Line and "X-Men" at Fox, for example -- Marvel will base the movies on the remaining 5,000 characters in its stable, including Captain America and Nick Fury.

Since emerging from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in 1998, Marvel now earns most of its profit from licensing its characters for toys, videogames and movies, Variety said.

The paper noted that, according to a Dow Jones report late Wednesday, Marvel has amassed a $500 million "war chest" to make movies with budgets up to $180 million. The company has also arranged for a seven-year, $525 million revolving credit facility with Merrill Lynch Commercial Finance Corp., with the movie rights to 10 comic book characters as security.

The deal with Paramount calls for the studio to receive a fee for marketing and distributing at least 10 movies.

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Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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