James Cameron, the American director of the "Terminator" and "Alien" movies, has signed an agreement with 20th Century Fox worth $500 million, according to the studio and published reports.
Mr. Cameron's production company, Lightstorm Entertainment, has agreed to an exclusive five-year, 12-picture deal, and this is the first time in decades that a top hit-making director has committed to work with a single studio.
In another huge deal, communications giant Time Warner announced last week that it and American pop star Madonna are forming an entertainment company, to be named Maverick.
Time Warner did not disclose the terms of the deal, but The New York Times and The Los Angeles Times have reported that it would advance Madonna between $45 million and $60 million for the fledging enterprise.
According to reports, the dollar figure includes a renegotiated recording contract giving Madonna a $5 million advance for each of her next seven albums and a 20 percent royalty rate. Under the seven-year contract, the entertainer would get her own record label, be able to publish music, produce television and film, and oversee merchandising and book publishing.
The deal, which is comparable to an agreement Michael Jackson signed last year with Sony Corporation, is unprecedented for a female pop entertainer.