Sony extends Michael De Luca deal

Producer will remain at studio through 2011

Sony wants to keep producer Michael De Luca in the fold.

The studio has once again extended its first-look arrangement with De Luca, who first parked his Michael De Luca Prods. on the Sony lot in 2004. De Luca will now have a home there through 2011.

"He brings us fantastic projects, enormous enthusiasm and consummate producing skills," Sony Pictures Entertainment co-chairman Amy Pascal said. "And he loooves movies."

Columbia Pictures co-president Matt Tolmach added: "Mike's grasp of mainstream pop culture and excellent filmmaker relationships are helping us tell real-life stories in highly entertaining ways. We've come to depend on his great taste in material and filmmakers."

In concert with the deal renewal, De Luca promoted MDLP assistant Bryan Haas, who's been with the company since 2004, to creative executive.

De Luca built a reputation for creative risk-taking and championing new filmmakers while he was president and COO of New Line Prods. during the 1990s. He spent two years as president of production at DreamWorks before producing "Zathura: A Space Adventure," "Ghost Rider" and "21" for Columbia.

"I remain incredibly excited and truly grateful for the opportunity to make movies with Michael (Lynton), Amy, Matt & Doug (Belgrad) here at Sony Pictures," De Luca said. "Beyond their filmmaking acumen, which includes an appetite for new talent and projects that truly capture the imagination, they have the best production, marketing and distribution teams in town."

On De Luca's forthcoming Sony slate are the horror adaptation "Priest" for Screen Gems; the film "The Social Network," about the creation of Facebook; the baseball flick "Moneyball"; and a film based on the true story of Capt. Richard Phillips, who was recently captured by Somali pirates and rescued by the U.S. Navy.