A deal between the principals of DreamWorks SKG and one of India's largest entertainment conglomerates to set up a new film company is on the brink of completion, according to people familiar with the matter.

Under the agreement, Mumbai-based Reliance ADA Group would invest about $500 million equity in the new movie venture and another $500 million in debt through J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., giving DreamWorks co-founder Steven Spielberg the financial backing he needs to split from Viacom Inc.'s Paramount Pictures.

Though the partnership between a Mumbai-based conglomerate and some of Hollywood's biggest names seems unlikely, the new venture comes at a time when the film industry is looking for foreign investors to replace money from Wall Street that poured into film financing in recent years but now has dried up.

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