DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc. said Tuesday its fourth-quarter net income fell 45 percent as the home video version of "Kung Fu Panda" failed to perform as well as "Shrek the Third" did a year ago.
After the markets closed, the Glendale animation film studio reported net income of $51.6 million (58 cents per share), compared with $94.1 million (98 cents) a year ago. The quarter included a 12 cent benefit related to the resolution of a tax reserve.
Revenue fell to 31 percent to nearly $200 million. "Panda" revenue during the quarter was $102 million, mostly from DVD sales, compared to more than $179 million for the third installment in the "Shrek" franchise during the same period in 2007.
The results were below the expectations of analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters, who on average forecast net income of 60 cents per share on $232 million in revenue.
For the full 2008 year, the company's net income fell 35 percent to nearly $143 million ($1.57) as revenue dropped 15 percent to $650 million.
DreamWorks plans to release its first 3-D film, "Monsters vs. Aliens," next month and Chief Executive Jeffrey Katzenberg has pledged to make all future films in that format, which could add $15 million to the cost of each film. Katzenberg has suggested tickets to 3-D films could sell for as much as a $5 premium.
"We believe that 'Monsters vs. Aliens' will reset the bar for what moviegoers should expect from a CG animated film and are confident that it will offer our audiences a premium viewing opportunity," he said in a statement.
On Wednesday, DreamWorks Animation shares closed down $2.14, or 11 percent, to $17.62 on the New York Stock Exchange. Caris & Company downgraded shares to "average" from "above average" and lowered its 12-month target price fro $20 from $32.
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