DreamWorks Animation inks deal with THQ

Videogame pact covers 'Kung Fu Panda,' 'Puss in Boots'

An expansion of DreamWorks Animation’s film and TV slate is proving beneficial for videogame publishers.

THQ, which had already been developing a game for the toon studio’s upcoming “MegaMind” (formerly “Oobermind”), has inked a multi-year deal with DreamWorks to exclusively produce games for all platforms based on “Kung Fu Panda: The Kaboom of Doom” and “Puss in Boots,” as well as the TV series “The Penguins of Madagascar.”

Rival gamemaker Activision has long been producing most of DreamWorks’ games, including those for the “Shrek” franchise, “Madagascar,” “Bee Movie,” “Shark Tale,” “Over the Hedge” and the first “Kung Fu Panda.” It has games for “How to Train Your Dragon” and “Shrek Forever After” out next year. Its deal with DreamWorks is up for renegotiation when it expires next summer.

With DreamWorks Animation planning to unspool five films every two years, in addition to TV shows and specials, executives there felt they needed to divide up the development of its games in order to guarantee that the titles would be ready for release whenever a filmed property bows.

“Now that we’re expanding our pipeline, the volume of work is significant,” said Kerry Phelan, head of worldwide consumer products for DreamWorks Animation. “We looked at who really understands the market of family games and figured out who could be the best partners for us.”

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