ORLANDO, Fla. -- Universal Orlando has renegotiated a contract with director Steven Spielberg that could've crippled the company.The director has received a percentage of the resort company's gross revenue since 1987 for films that inspired several park rides, consulting and allowing his name in promotional materials.The payments have averaged about $20 million a year, but Spielberg had an option to take the rest in a one-time payment in 2010. Analysts estimated it would cost hundreds of millions of dollars. The company, owned by a unit of General Electric Co. and private-equity firm The Blackstone Group, couldn't afford the buyout. Universal is already trying to restructure nearly $1 billion in debt due in April.The new Spielberg contract now pushes the director's call option to 2017.
Celebrating the works of John Williams, Steven Spielberg and George Lucas. Fans bringing you news on the movie directors and composer. We will post unbiased movie reviews and the latest news and blog posts on Lucasfilm, Star Wars and more.