DreamWorks Animation SKG is licensing its movie characters for various theme parks being developed in Russia, an increasingly important market for the Glendale-based studio.
The creator of the "Shrek," "Madagascar" and "Kung Fu Panda" franchises said it had signed a licensing agreement with Regions Group of Companies, which is developing what is billed as Europe's largest indoor theme parks. Regions says it's the fourth-largest retail property owner in Russia.
The parks, scheduled to open in 2015, would be located in St. Petersburg, Moscow and Yekaterinburg and include various attractions based on DreamWorks characters. They would be part of larger entertainment developments, including mixed-use movie/concert halls, 4-D movie theaters, hotels and shopping centers.
DreamWorks Animation is not investing in the parks or participating in the development, a spokeswoman for the studio said.
Nonetheless, like China, Russia has emerged as a key market for DreamWorks Animation and other Hollywood studios. The country has a strong appetite for Hollywood movies and is rapidly expanding its theater industry.