Spielberg Pays $15m for DreamWorks Projects

DreamWorks wrote a check to Paramount for $26.5m for the right to keep 17 films but more than half of that sum came from Steven Spielberg himself.

Last Updated: January 15, 2009 @ 11:41 AM

DreamWorks wrote a check to Paramount for $26.5 million on Wednesday for the right to keep 17 films including "Dinner for Schmucks" and "The Trial of the Chicago 7" – but more than half of that sum came from Steven Spielberg himself, reports Variety. Spielberg, "perhaps for the first time in his career," is spending his own money on the studio, along with Indian conglomerate Reliance, which is covering the other half of bill, a DreamWorks source told the trade. The revamped company headed by Spielberg and Stacey Snider has had to scale back its ambitions because it so far has not matched a $550 million investment by Reliance. As a result, DreamWorks has forfeited the right to co-finance another 17 films with Paramount, though Spielberg can still be a producer. DreamWorks and Reliance are currently splitting the company’s overhead, which was $50 million a year when DreamWorks was owned by Paramount.