It appears David Geffen’s recent rapprochement dinner with GE chairman/CEO Jeffrey Immelt went well. Today, Jeff Zucker told an investor conference that NBC Universal would consider buying DreamWorks from Viacom. “If the opportunity were to arise, it’s something obviously we would look at. We know them well, we have a long history with them.” (Well, actually, it’s Uni prez/COO Ron Meyer who has the long history with them.) Nor would there a problem getting third-party financing for DreamWorks’ picture slate: “lots and lots of people want to put up money,” an insider says. Everybody knows Steven Spielberg is only interested in a relationship with Universal, since his offices are still on the lot and he’s called it home for eons. And, an outside chance, Fox. Viacom/Paramount? Not so much, after all the animosity that’s gone on. “It’s unlikely under any circumstances,” a source tells me. Speaking at the same conference immediately after Zucker, Viacom CEO Philippe Dauman glossed over frictions saying Viacom was “very pleased with where we are with DreamWorks,” and that he has a “very good personal relationship” with Spielberg. “Our objective is to proceed with mutual respect. We’re going to proceed with calm and deliberateness.” DreamWorks can’t start negotiating until April.
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