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DreamWorks, Intel Collaborate on 3-D Movies

SAN FRANCISCO -- Starting in 2009, all of DreamWorks Animation SKG films will be in next-generation 3-D.

"This is the next innovation for the movie industry," Jeffrey Katzenberg, chief executive of DreamWorks Animation (NYSE: DWA), said in an interview. "It impacts how we make our movies, how movie theaters present our films and how audiences experience our films."

Katzenberg's DreamWorks Animation and No. 1 chipmaker Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) announced a 3-D movie image brand called InTru 3D at Intel's Developer Forum in San Francisco on Wednesday.

The first movie from DreamWorks Animation to use the brand and logo will be "Monsters vs. Aliens," coming out next March.

Financial terms were not disclosed.

Renee James, head of Intel's software and solutions business, told Reuters that Intel's contribution to the 3-D partnership technology came through acquisitions of startup companies, with more innovations from its stand-alone graphics chip due in 2009, code-named Larrabee.

"The two of us will be working together to generate new computer animation from the ground up," James said.

Already, DreamWorks Animation has announced plans to replace its existing computing hardware with those using Intel microprocessors and other technology for its large computer-animation operations.

"The quality and creativity of where Intel is headed is light-years ahead of what we've seen anybody else doing," Katzenberg said.

Katzenberg said that the animated 3-D images that can be produced now with digital projectors and the computers used in the production process are vastly more sophisticated than the hokey, blurry 3-D images of decades ago.

"The real promise of 3-D is an immersive experience, not an observational experience," he said.

James and Katzenberg said the next logical iteration of the new 3-D technology after theaters would be in video games, and it would expand from there.

"We want to then move this technology on to the Internet and other experiences," James said.