Zemeckis’ ImageMovers inks deal with Universal

Shingle signs two-year, first look pact

Robert Zemeckis has signed a first-look deal to bring his ImageMovers Digital shingle over to Universal, where he’ll develop live-action pics in addition to the motion-capture animation pics on which he’s been focused in recent years.

Zemeckis is coming off a rough patch at the B.O. with the flop of Disney’s “Mars Needs Moms” earlier this year. But the helmer has a history at U, notably through the “Back to the Future” franchise, and the studio was interested in another banner with the ability to produce family-friendly animated fare.

ImageMovers, run by Zemeckis, Jack Rapke and Steve Starkey, had been under an overall deal with Disney that ended in March. Shingle was founded in 1997.

ImageMovers is not expected to relocate to the U lot. Pact is said to run for two years.

Even with ImageMovers temporarily without a studio home, Zemeckis has been circling several projects, including Paramount’s “Flight,” starring Denzel Washington.

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