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How to pay your CEO: Katzenberg's compensation reaches $23 million in 2009

April 1, 2010 |  2:03 pm

2009 was a good year for DreamWorks Animation Chief Executive Jeffrey Katzenberg.

The tireless promoter of 3-D movie technology received an annual salary of just $1 last year, but the value of his total compensation climbed to $23.4 million in 2009 because of stock and option awards he was granted last spring, according to a regulatory filing today. He received virtually no compensation the previous two years, electing not to receive a token salary and waiving stock awards.

The stock payments were awarded under an equity-based employment agreement the company struck with Katzenberg last year that ties his pay to the company's shareholder return.

"This overall compensation package is intended to result in Mr. Katzenberg's total compensation being at approximately the 50th percentile for comparable positions at other entertainment studios,'' the filing stated.

DreamWorks earnings per share climbed 10% last year while its stock price jumped 58%, although its share price fell 12%  this week after a disappointing opening for its latest 3-D film, "How to Train Your Dragon."

-- Richard Verrier