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THQ doesn't have Toy Story 3 rights

Tue 04 Dec 2007 8:33pm GMT / 3:33pm EST / 12:33pm PST

THQ CEO Brian Farrell noted that his company doesn't have the videogame rights to the Disney/Pixar Toy Story 3 film scheduled for release in 2010

THQ CEO Brian Farrell noted that his company doesn't have the videogame rights to the Disney/Pixar Toy Story 3 film scheduled for release in 2010.

Speaking at a UBS Investment Bank conference in New York City, Farrell said that THQ's current licensing deal gives them the rights to develop games based upon four Pixar films.

THQ has developed games based upon Pixar films such as Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, and Cars under an agreement that first began in 2002. The current agreement was signed in 2004, before the merger between Disney and Pixar.

Ratatouille, released this year, was the first film covered under the current agreement; Wall-E, coming to theaters in 2008, will be the second. The deal will also cover two as-yet-unnamed Disney/Pixar films to be released in 2009 and 2011.

Farrell said that THQ never had any rights to Toy Story 3, so it wasn't surprising that Disney has decided to develop the videogames internally. The film itself is currently scheduled for a 2010 release.

Because the current licensing agreement gives the company the rights (and time) to develop videogame sequels, such as the recently released Cars: Maternational, THQ can make games based upon Disney/Pixar properties through 2014. After that, however, their working relationship is uncertain.

Farrell noted, however, that THQ has some visibility in the long-term plans of Disney/Pixar.

"Intellectual properties come and go in this business," he said. "We have to plan as if those aren't going to happen, but certainly we will work aggressively with Disney as we will with everyone else in the IP business to try and get key franchises."

To Farrell, whether or not THQ develops Disney/Pixar properties in the future depends upon how successful Disney is on its own.

"It is really a better question for Disney," he said. "Are they satisfied with what they are doing with their internal group?"

In fiscal 2007, over 80 per cent of THQ's revenue came from licensed properties, although the company is working to increase the percentage of owned IP.

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