Bruckheimer inks new Disney pact

Jerry Bruckheimer, who has produced “The Rock,” “Dangerous Minds” and “Crimson Tide,” has reupped with the studio that financed those box office hits. Bruckheimer and Walt Disney Studios have signed another five-year agreement said to be a top-of-the-line producing deal.

The non-exclusive deal, which was being negotiated for months, extends and adjusts the studio’s original long-term deal with Bruckheimer and his late partner Don Simpson. Jake Bloom negotiated with Disney on Bruckheimer’s behalf.

“Since the studio decided to get into the event-picture business, there’s (been) no better producer than Jerry Bruckheimer that we could have turned to as our partner,” said Walt Disney Studios chairman Joe Roth. He noted that Bruckheimer is currently working on two other event-type films, the Michael Bay-directed “Armageddon,” which stars Bruce Willis and is currently in pre-production with producer Gale Anne Hurd, and “Con Air,” which bows June 6.

Touchstone Pictures’ “Con Air” will get its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on May 15.

Bruckheimer is also putting together “Enemy of the State” with director Tony Scott. Will Smith is still in negotiations to join the film, which is expected to go before the cameras this fall (Daily Variety, April 24).

“When you have a good partnership, why split it up? I’ve had enormous success with Joe Roth and (Walt Disney motion picture group chairman) Dick Cook,” Bruckheimer said. “I’ve been with (Walt Disney Co. chairman and CEO) Michael Eisner since 1982, first at Paramount and then at Disney, so it just makes sense to continue at a studio that has supported me and my films.”

Bruckheimer Films over the past year has ventured into television as well, with “Dangerous Minds” on ABC. He also recently completed casting on “Solider of Fortune,” which is launching into syndication this fall.

The producer joined Disney in 1989, moving from Paramount with partner Simpson. After a shaky start, the two unexpectedly burst back on the scene with “Bad Boys” at Columbia Pictures.

Simpson died of a drug overdose in January 1996. Bruckheimer’s “The Rock” rocketed to success at the box office in the summer of ’96.

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