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May 21, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

China’s flirtation with Hollywood took on the aspects of a full-scale marriage as one of its biggest exhibitors, Dalian Wanda Group, agreed to buy AMC Entertainment, America’s second largest theater chain after Regal Entertainment, for $2.6 billion in debt and equity and an additional $500 million to be used principally for renovations. The New York Times observed that the deal “represents a significant expansion of Chinese influence in the American film industry.” The Los Angeles Times noted that it gives Wanda “more clout in negotiating with major Hollywood studios eager to expand into the rapidly growing Chinese market.” The deal also follows reports that several studios are planning joint ventures with Chinese production companies to co-produce blockbuster movies in China. The deal calls for current AMC executives and managers to sign new contracts, but the length of those contracts was not disclosed.