The Starbucks Corp. has hired the William Morris Agency to seek music, film and book projects for the coffee retailer to consider for marketing and distribution in its 11,000 locations worldwide.

The Starbucks Corp. has hired the William Morris Agency to seek music, film and book projects for the coffee retailer to consider for marketing and distribution in its 11,000 locations worldwide.

"We will look at each project they submit and discuss what makes sense at that time," Starbucks Entertainment president Ken Lombard said.

Starbucks, which already has enjoyed success with music, selling nearly 3.5 million CDs last year, officially entered the film business in April with an innovative marketing and profit-sharing campaign for "Akeelah and the Bee," an acclaimed urban drama about a young girl who defies the odds to reach the national spelling bee.

The Lionsgate movie opened Friday, ranking No. 8 with estimated three-day ticket sales of just $6.3 million. The figure came in at the low end of Lionsgate's expectations, which had ranged between $10 million and $6 million.

Lombard added that Starbucks will continue to focus on distribution in the music arena, and marketing and promotion in film but has yet to determine its strategy for books.

—Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

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