To increase its economic and cultural influence around the globe, China will build a new movie studio and a theme park in the southwest section of the country, the London Times has reported.
The newspaper said the project was named after President Xi Jinping’s program, ‘One Belt, One Road,’ and will be located in Chongqing. The government has announced plans to plug billion (SD) into the film studio project as part of its push to expand its cultural ties overseas.
The government restricts the number of Hollywood films to be shown annually in domestic Chinese cinemas to 34. The new project is an effort to boost the nation’s cultural competence and gradually get rid of its dependence to western movies, even as it faces an increasing desire by the public for high-quality films.
The studio in the southwest municipality of Chongqing will include a theme park and tourist attractions. Construction will begin early next year and is expected to cost a total15 billion yuan (HK.8 billion).
Officials say they already have operating agreements with several foreign partners. The state-run Xinhua News Agency said the park would include tie-ins with gaming and online entertainment.
China is already the world’s second-largest film market and home to the world’s largest cinema operator, Dalian Wanda, which has purchased US media companies AMC Theatres and Legendary Entertainment. Its signature film studio, Hengdian World Studios, spans almost 3,000 hectares. In another move demonstrating China's ambition to spread its cultural wings, Wang Jianlin, the head of Wanda, plans to build the largest movie studio in the world in Qingdao and promises to change the status quo of the Chinese movie industry.