Bankrupt Kodak asks to pull name from Oscars theater

Bankrupt Kodak asks to pull name from Oscars theater

NEW YORK - Agence France-Presse
Bankrupt Kodak asks to pull name from Oscars theater

Confetti falls at the end of the show at the 79th Annual Academy Awards in Hollywood, California, in this February 25, 2007 file photo. REUTERS photo

The century-old photography trailblazer Eastman Kodak has filed a request to pull its name from the Los Angeles theater hosting the Oscars as part of bankruptcy proceedings launched last month.

The request filed at a New York bankruptcy court on Wednesday asks for the cancelation of a contract signed in 2001 with developer TrizecHahn Hollywood in which Kodak paid an annual sum to attach its name to the venue.

"The Debtors' rejection of the Contract will represent a significant annual cost savings to the Debtors and their estate," Kodak said in the filing.

"Accordingly, the Debtors submit that rejection of the Contract represents a sound exercise of their business judgment and should therefore be approved." The Kodak Theater, inaugurated in November 2001 with seating for 3,332, has hosted the Academy Awards -- Hollywood's premiere prize gala -- since 2002.

The contract provided for the theater -- currently owned by the CIM group -- to bear Kodak's name for 20 years.

Kodak, an iconic American firm that introduced generations of consumers to mass-market cameras, filed for bankruptcy last month and has a hearing scheduled for February 15.

The company hopes that seeking Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection will give it time to reorganize its businesses -- and possibly sell off its valuable patent portfolio -- to avoid being shut down entirely.