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Studios, Chinese company settle piracy case

Five Hollywood studios have reached a settlement with a Chinese Internet company accused of providing cybercafes with illegal copies of their movies, according to the Motion Picture Association, an industry group.
Movies, such as "Hitch," left, with Will Smith, and "Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man's Chest," were among those being illegally being provided to Internet cafes by a Chinese company, said the Motion Picture Association.
Movies, such as "Hitch," left, with Will Smith, and "Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man's Chest," were among those being illegally being provided to Internet cafes by a Chinese company, said the Motion Picture Association.Columbia Pictures
/ Source: The Associated Press

Five Hollywood studios have reached a settlement with a Chinese Internet company accused of providing cybercafes with illegal copies of their movies, an industry group said Thursday.

The five studios sued Beijing Jeboo Interactive Science & Technology Co. in Shanghai for supplying Internet cafes with computer software that allowed users to download and watch illegal copies of 20 Hollywood movies, including "Hitch" and "Pirates of the Caribbean 2: Dead Man's Chest," the Motion Picture Association said in a statement.

The group said the five studios have now reached an agreement with Jeboo that resolves the pending lawsuits. The Hollywood studios involved are Walt Disney Pictures, 20th Century Fox, Columbia Pictures, Universal Pictures and Paramount Pictures.

MPA said the terms of the deal are confidential but that Jeboo has apologized and paid a "significant" amount in compensation.

Jeboo didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

The MPA says more than 90 percent of DVDs in China are pirated.

It estimates that piracy in the country cost American studios $244 million, and Chinese studios $2.4 billion in lost box office revenue in 2005, the last year for which the group released such figures.