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China Rising In Movies And Entertainment

China rising in movies and entertainment.  Its studios, its ambitions, its Hollywood—and ours.

In this Wednesday, June 19, 2013, file photo, Wanda Chairman Wang Jianlin applauds in front of the logo for Dalian Wanda Group during an event at a hotel in Beijing, China. (AP)

In this Wednesday, June 19, 2013, file photo, Wanda Chairman Wang Jianlin applauds in front of the logo for Dalian Wanda Group during an event at a hotel in Beijing, China. (AP)

“Titanic 3D” did a billion dollars in box office in China.  But “Lost in Thailand” did more – a full-on Chinese production.  “Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol” was huge in Beijing and Shanghai.  But “Painted Skin,” starring Chen Kun and Zhao Wei, was bigger.  “Men in Black III” did well in Chinese theaters.  Homegrown “Chinese Zodiac” did better.

The richest man in China is now building out China’s own vast Hollywood, complete with its own sign on a hill and its own huge global ambitions.

Up next On Point:  Hollywood, China, and the coming contest over global cultural preeminence.

– Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Laurie Burkitt, reporter for the Wall Street Journal covering the Chinese consumer sector, including entertainment and retail. (@lburkitt)

Michael Berry, professor of contemporary Chinese cultural studies at the University of California Santa Barbara. (@bairuiwen)

Jeffrey Chan, chief operating officer and director of Bona Film Group, a Chinese production and distribution company. Their film, “My Lucky Star” is currently #1 at the Chinese box office.

John Horn, staff writer for the Los Angeles Times covering the film business. (@jghorn)

From Tom’s Reading List

The Los Angeles Times: Wang Jianlin’s film studio plan in China has a Hollywood following — “Studio executives, talent agents and luminaries such as Leonardo DiCaprio, Nicole Kidman and Harvey Weinstein stood with Wang for the Sunday unveiling of the planned Oriental Movie Metropolis — an $8.2-billion project that would include 20 film and TV sound stages near Qingdao, along with a theme park, wax museum and space for an annual film festival.”

Variety: How China’s Homegrown Biz Is Threatening Hollywood’s Payday — “Yes, the China box office is growing, but not for everyone. In the current year, ticket sales for local films increased 144% to $1.12 billion, while imported films saw a 21% slump to $670 million — despite the relaxing of quotas. 

The Hollywood Reporter: Zhang Ziyi Tops China Box Office With Romantic Spy Movie ‘My Lucky Star’ — “The movie features Zhang as a cartoonist named Sophie who becomes involved with a mysterious man named David, played by Taiwanese heartthrob Wang Leehom. Sophie finds herself at the center of an international diamond heist, and increasingly drawn to David. Action takes place in Asian hotspots such as Singapore, Hong Kong, Macau and the Chinese mainland.’Our goal was to make a real Chinese movie for Chinese audiences that would feel Chinese and be in Chinese, but it would have a specific Hollywood style — because that would be something new,’ Gordon told local media.”

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