- Dalian Wanda looks to add to its portfolio of American entertainment properties, with a possible US$1 billion buy of Dick Clark Productions.
- Wanda snapped up Legendary Entertainment for a whopping $3.5 billion earlier this year.
- Wang’s voracious appetite for Hollywood assets is beginning to rankle some, with 16 members of the U.S. Congress recently calling for greater scrutiny.
China’s richest man Wang Jianlin reportedly has his sights set on Dick Clark Productions, the company behind the Golden Globe Awards, American Music Awards, Billboard Music Awards, and So You Think You Can Dance.
Wang’s latest foray into Hollywood is expected to cost a cool US$1 billion for his company, the property-to-entertainment conglomerate, Dalian Wanda. The eye-popping price tag is almost three times what Dick Clark was last sold for in 2012.
The possible deal follows last week’s announcement of a major motion-picture team-up with Sony which could see Wanda invest in a handful of films, including Spider-Man: Homecoming (蜘蛛侠：归来).
Wanda snapped up Legendary Entertainment, producer of blockbusters including Jurassic World and Pacific Rim, for a whopping $3.5 billion earlier this year. Prior to that Wanda used its AMC Entertainment to buy European exhibitor Odeon & UCI Cinemas for $1.2 billion.
Wang’s voracious appetite for Hollywood assets is beginning to rankle some, with 16 members of the U.S. Congress recently calling for greater scrutiny of China’s investments in American entertainment companies. The letter cited Wanda’s purchase of Legendary and AMC and expressed “growing concerns” about the potential for Chinese censorship and propaganda in Hollywood movies.
Wang hopes to “change the world where rules are set by foreigners,” he said in an interview on Chinese television earlier last month. “One tiger is no match for a pack of wolves – Shanghai has one Disney, while Wanda, across the nation, will open 15 to 20,” the tycoon said, reacting aggressively to Disney’s push into China with its Shanghai Disney Resort.
And Wang’s Hollywood asset buying binge is far from over. The item he has coveted the most – one of the so-called “big six” Hollywood studios – has so far eluded him. Wanda was in talks to buy a 49 percent stake in Paramount Pictures this summer, but it fell through at the last minute.
It looks like it’s only a matter of time until it happens. “Only the six are real global film companies, while the rest are not. If we are to build a real movie empire, this is a necessary step,” Wang told Reuters last month.
— This article originally appeared on the Beijinger.