AOL Time Warner and Japanese electronics giant Toshiba are to team up to develop and push digital cinema distribution.

Business daily Asahi Shimbun quoted Richard Parsons, co-chief operating officer of AOL Time Warner, as saying that they plan to distribute Warner Bros pictures worldwide via satellite using Toshiba technology. Parsons said that the plan should come to fruition within three to five years and that it could cut distribution costs by 60%-70%.

Toshiba currently has a 0.1% stake in AOL Time Warner, which already has a joint venture with another Japanese outfit, Mycal. The stores and malls group operates a struggling chain of multiplex cinemas under the Warner Mycal Corp brand.