The Chinese company has also invested in Allied, Star Trek Beyond, and Jack Reacher: Never Go Back.
Huahua Media has become an exclusive partner in China with Paramount Pictures for the roll-out of Transformers:The Last Knight (变形金刚5：最后的骑士), the next installment in the billion-dollar blockbuster franchise based on the Hasbro toy line.
Details of the deal are still unclear but a statement released by the two-year-old Chinese company trumpeted the deal as particularly groundbreaking for an agreement between a Chinese and a US company in the film industry.
Huahua CEO Wang Kefei joined Paramount’s Chairman and Chief Executive Brad Grey, Megan Colligan, worldwide president of marketing and distribution, and Nic Crawley, President of International Marketing & Distribution to ink the deal in Shanghai on Thursday.
The agreement most likely means that the company will be replacing 1905 Internet Technology as Paramount’s Chinese production partner for the franchise.
China Film Insider sought clarification from Huahua Media but company representatives declined to comment further on the deal. Paramount Pictures could not be reached for comment by CFI on Friday.
In October, a court in Chengdu fined Paramount Pictures and 1905 Internet Technology over a breach of contract dispute relating to product placement and the filming of Transformers: Age of Extinction (变形金刚4：绝迹重生).
Paramount and 1905 were ordered to pay more than RMB 2 million (US$295,000) to a scenic spot in southwest China’s Chongqing Municipality for failing to feature the scenic area’s logo inTransformers: Age of Extinction.
Huahua was previously one of a few companies involved in the marketing of Transformers: Age of Extinction in China and has been attached to all of Paramount’s titles in China since.
Huahua is the sole Chinese investor in Paramount and GK Films’ Allied (间谍同盟), which hit Chinese cinemas on Wednesday, December 7. Huahua Media also previously invested in Paramount films Star Trek Beyond (星际迷航3: 超越星辰) and Jack Reacher: Never Go Back (侠探杰克：永不回头).
Transformers: Age of Extinction, the fourth film in the franchise, became China’s highest-ever grossing movie when it hit cinemas in 2014. The series is wildly popular in the country and has attracted brands ranging from milk to mobile phones to banks.
Transformers: The Last Knight, starring Mark Wahlberg, Laura Haddock, Anthony Hopkins, Isabela Moner, Stanley Tucci, John Goodman, John Turturro, and Josh Duhamel, is due for release in the U.S. on June 23, 2017.
— Additional reporting by Qingyuan Wang