NEW PARTNER: DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc., the movie studio behind "Kung Fu Panda" and "Madagascar," says its films will be distributed by 20th Century Fox next year. The five-year deal replaces an existing distribution agreement DreamWorks has with Viacom Inc.'s Paramount Pictures.

THE SIGNIFICANCE: The arrangement brings DreamWorks' animated titles together with those of Fox, whose Blue Sky Studios produced the computer-animated hits "Ice Age" and "Rio."

BENEFITS: Although DreamWorks says its fee in theatrical and home video markets will be similar to its existing deal, it will benefit from lower costs for films distributed digitally.