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ChinaVision Media Group Ltd, the Hong Kong-listed Chinese film group, is to move into the movie-related theme park business.
The company has struck a deal with Hong Kong comedian and director Stephen CHOW to establish a joint venture company, Film Art Centre, that will create tourist attractions based on the movie properties they jointly develop.
Film Art Centre, which will operate from an as yet undecided location in mainland China, will be 75% owned by ChinaVision.
Its first themed area will be based on Journey to the West, the big budget fantasy that is now in post-production. Journey is a joint effort involving Chow's Bingo Group Holdings Ltd, Edko Films Ltd, Village Roadshow Entertainment Group Asia and ChinaVision.
As previously reported, Chinavision has "an option to invest in the production of 5 motion pictures in which [Chow] would play a significant role as filmmaker, producer, director, script writer, protagonist or other leading role within seven years from the date of the agreement."
Film related theme parks have been mooted at several locations in China by multiple developers. Construction began last year on the Disneyland park near Shanghai before the central government appeared to ban development of further attractions in in an attempt to dampen speculative building projects. Shanghai Oriental DreamWorks Film & Television Technology recently unveiled plans for a theme park near Shanghai, while Huayi Brothers Media Corporation has announced plans for a park at Suzhou.
Three years ago Chinese cultural industries conglomerate Zhonghong Group and the US's Thinkwell company announced plans for a $1.5 billion theme park franchise at Huairou, near Beijing, that would be based on Journey to the West's central character, Monkey King. In 2009 the Shanghai municipal government announced plans for a theme park franchise based on Journey to the West which it would then roll out to other cities around China.
Source: Film Business Asia
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