Japanese distributor Toho-Towa has announced the extension of its exclusive contract with Universal Pictures, as well as its line-up, until 2010.

Toho-Towa's slate of 18 films consists predominantly of Universal titles. Upcoming 2008 releases include The Mummy: Tomb Of The Dragon Emperor (August 16) and Wanted (September).

Announced for 2009 are Edward Zwick's Defiance , Benicio Del Toro starrer The Wolf Man, Nicholas Cage action film Knowing and Johnny Depp gangster film Public Enemies. Russell Crowe action film Nottingham is slated for 2010.

Other major non-Universal titles on the slate include Red Cliff (Nov 1, co-distributed with Avex Entertainment) and Terminator Salvation (2009).

President Hiro Matsuoka announced the extension of the contract with Universal for another year, with the larger and extended slate signaling an expected renewal beyond 2009.

Universal releases so far this year have included American Gangster, Mr. Bean's Holiday, Atonement, Elizabeth: The Golden Age, and Charlie Wilson's War.

The Bourne Ultimatum was the first Universal release through Toho-Towa in November 2007 after the partnership was formed last February. It's the only release other than American Gangster to surpass the Y1bn ($9.35m) hit threshold. However, as a Toho subsidiary, Toho-Towa has strong booking power in a crowded market.