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Oscar Wins Give Boost to Some Firms' Shares

March 27, 2001|Reuters

Shares of some companies whose studios won Oscars traded higher Monday, although analysts downplayed the impact of the awards.

The biggest winner, the epic "Gladiator," which won Oscars for best picture and best actor for star Russell Crowe, was produced by DreamWorks SKG and Universal Pictures, a unit of Vivendi Universal (V). Universal also released "Erin Brockovich," for which Julia Roberts won best actress. The French utility and media group's American depositary receipts gained $1.85 to $59.15 in New York Stock Exchange trading.

ADRs of Sony Corp. (SNE) climbed $2.34 to $75.24 after its Sony Pictures Classic division's "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" took home four Oscar wins, including best foreign film.

Oscar wins can help ticket sales for movies still in theaters, as well as sales of videos and DVDs, but usually don't have a big impact on stocks.

"Film divisions are a pretty small component of the overall picture," said Prudential analyst Katherine Styponias.

Indeed, the parent company of USA films, USA Networks (USAI), lost 38 cents to $22.13 even though its movie "Traffic" racked up a best screenplay award, best director for Steven Soderbergh and best supporting actor for Benicio Del Toro.

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