September 30, 2009

Universal and Mattel extend ‘Barbie’ deal

Hollywood's Universal Pictures Wednesday announced a 10-picture, four-year worldwide marketing and distribution agreement with Mattel.

Universal said it also has acquired the rights to distribute all previous Barbie titles beginning Jan. 1, making Universal the primary distributor of the entire Barbie catalog.

The deal, which covers the United States and all international territories, runs through 2013 and is an extension of an existing agreement between the film studio and the toy giant.

The announcement was jointly made by Craig Kornblau, president of Universal Studios Home Entertainment; Eddie Cunningham, president of Universal Pictures International Entertainment; and Richard Dickson, general manager of Barbie and senior vice president of Mattel.

We look forward to extending this extremely rewarding relationship with Mattel for years to come, Kornblau said in a statement. The phenomenal success of the 'Barbie' titles we've released over the past three years not only confirms the exceptional global appeal of Mattel's movies, but it also underscores the strength in pairing Mattel's celebrated and beloved 'Barbie' brand with Universal's formidable worldwide marketing and distribution infrastructure.

Dickson said his company isi thrilled by the extended agreement.

With 75 million movies sold worldwide and our titles consistently ranking No. 1 on the charts, 'Barbie' has demonstrated unparalleled success as a powerful girls' entertainment franchise since 2001, he said.