Walden Media, whom Disney has partnered with on the Narnia Chronicles, has signed a deal with Fox Studios.
The new label already has a number of films under development,
including "Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium," starring Dustin Hoffman and
Natalie Portman, and "City of Ember," based on Jeanne DuPrau’s novel
and produced by Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman for Playtone Productions.
This sounds like fallout from Disney’s recently reduced schedule of film releases. If there are only eight films a year, there is no guarantee that Walden Media will be a partner in one of them. So it makes sense to sign with another studio. The only problem for Disney would be that Walden can take that ‘family film’ branding that Disney is so famous for, and help out Disney’s competitors.