Disney, AAM strike digital pact

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Walt Disney Studios International on Monday became the latest company to join the growing group of studios to sign up for a digital-print future.

The studio's overseas distribution arm sealed a non-exclusive, long-term deal with Arts Alliance Media to supply movies in digital format. The parties announced the deal in London.

Disney's international unit joins Sony Pictures Releasing International, Paramount Pictures International, 20th Century Fox and Universal Pictures International in pledging its commitment to the digital theater cause. The move leaves Warner Bros. as the only major yet to sort out its terms.

Under the agreement, Disney has pledged to supply its films "across Europe" in digital format to AAM-deployed, DCI-compliant digital-cinema screens.

The releasing arm also has pledged to "make provisional contributions towards the digital cinema hardware costs of AAM-deployed, DCI-compliant screens."

AAM's previously signed long-term digital cinema deployment agreements with Fox, Universal, Paramount and Sony cover the conversion of as many as 7,000 screens over the next few years.

Disney's move follows a November decision by French exhibition chain CGR Cinemas to sign with AAM to convert all 400 of its screens to digital.
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