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DreamWorks Animation Acquires Troll Rights From Dam Family

DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc., the independent film studio, acquired rights to the iconic Troll dolls from the Dam family and company, the latest purchase to bolster its character roster.

DreamWorks Animation also named Shawn Dennis head of brand development to oversee the property, the Glendale, California-based studio said yesterday in a statement. Terms of the acquisition weren’t disclosed.

Chief Executive Officer Jeffrey Katzenberg is acquiring rights to characters and stories for films, television and merchandise. Last year, DreamWorks Animation bought Classic Media for $155 million, gaining vintage TV characters including Casper the Friendly Ghost and Rocky & Bullwinkle.

“Trolls is a brand with over 50 years of deep heritage and we are thrilled to bring this iconic, multi-generational property to DreamWorks Animation,” Ann Daly, chief operating officer, said in the statement.

The deal makes DreamWorks Animation the worldwide licensor for Trolls merchandise, with the exception of Scandinavia, where Dam Things continues to hold rights. A Trolls film, in development before the acquisition, is scheduled for release in 2015, according to the Internet Movie Database.

Dennis most recently was a senior vice president at American Girl and held branding and marketing posts at Dell Inc. and the National Football League, the company said.

DreamWorks Animation rose 0.6 percent to $19.62 yesterday in New York. The shares have gained 18 percent this year.

The company’s latest theatrical release, “The Croods,” is the third top-grossing film in domestic revenue this year, with ticket sales of $128.3 million, according to Box Office Mojo, an industry researcher. Worldwide sales for the film total $335.4 million after four weeks.

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