The Village Roadshow Pictures Group (VRPG) has increased its film facilityfrom $900m to $1.4bn and extended the term of the deal until January 2011.

Those close to the move said it would enable VRPG, the recentlyformed strategic alliance between Village Roadshow and Crescent Entertainment,to substantially expand its co-production capabilities.

The company has also extended the contracts of its seniormanagement team at Village Roadshow Pictures Entertainment, namely chairman andchief executive officer Bruce Berman, president and chief operating officerSteve Krone, and production president Dana Goldberg.

VRPG and its principal co-production partner Warner Bros have co-producedand co-financed 40 pictures together.

"Our expanded financial resources will allow VRPG to enhanceits already enviable position as the world's leading independent productioncompany," Berman said.

"We are doubly fortunate to have Steve, Dana and the rest ofthe remarkable Village Roadshow team, along with a splendid partnership withBarry Meyer, Alan Horn, Jeff Robinov and the entire Warner Bros organisation."

Warner Bros Entertainment president and chief operating officerAlan Horn added: "We have had an exceptional relationship with Village Roadshowfor more than three decades, which has enabled our two companies to undertakemany ambitious and successful film projects.

Upcoming releases with Warner Bros include the Harrison Fordaction thriller Firewall, which opens in North America on Feb 10, romantic comedy TheLake House starringKeanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock, set to open on Jun 16, and George Miller'sCG-animated comedy musical adventure Happy Feet, currently in production in Sydney.