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Are the Hollywood Studios Making Money?

Wednesday Aug 8, 2012

Companies with movie studios have begun releasing their earnings reports for the latest quarter. It generally covers the April-June period, though some companies have fiscal quarters that depart from that.

Here's a look at reports for selected movie industry companies.

July 31: DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. says net income fell 63 percent, to a level below analysts' expectations. Revenue fell 25 percent. Results for the movie studio were driven by the box office receipts from the movie "Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted." The movie has grossed more than $500 million in theaters worldwide since its June 8 release.

Aug. 1: Time Warner Inc. says revenue at its Warner Bros. studio fell 8 percent to $2.6 billion because last year's quarter had strong releases. The blockbuster Batman movie "The Dark Knight Rises" didn't open in theaters until the quarter ended. In the second quarter last year, Time Warner Inc. had "The Hangover Part II" in theaters and the next-to-last Harry Potter movie on home video.

Comcast Corp. says its Universal movie studio lost money on its would-be summer blockbuster, the expensive and critically skewered "Battleship." Revenue in the filmed entertainment division fell 2 percent to $1.2 billion.

Aug. 2: Sony Corp.’s movie division saw a 6 percent increase in sales with the hit "Men in Black 3," and better cable and network program revenue. But it had an operating loss partly because of marketing expenses for this year’s films including "The Amazing Spider-Man."

Aug. 3: Viacom Inc. says revenue at its Paramount movie studio dropped 29 percent. It released three movies in the quarter: "Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted," ’’The Dictator" and "Titanic 3D." In the same quarter last year, it had four blockbusters: "Kung Fu Panda 2," ’’Thor," ’’Super 8" and "Transformers: Dark of the Moon."

Tuesday: The Walt Disney Co. says revenue at its movie studio was almost unchanged from a year ago at $1.63 billion, which was less than the $1.77 billion analysts expected. The Marvel superhero epic "The Avengers" helped boost profit in the segment. Studio profits jumped to $313 million from $49 million a year ago. The company says upbeat ticket sales to movies such as "The Avengers" and "Brave" were offset by fewer sales of DVD and Blu-ray discs. Prominent home video titles during the quarter included "John Carter" and "The Muppets."

Wednesday: News Corp. says revenue at its 20th Century Fox movie studio revenue fell 14 percent to $1.74 billion, due to tough comparisons against the box office success of "Rio" last year.

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