Oriental DreamWorks sketches cartoon blueprint
By Patrick Frater
Tue, 07 August 2012, 10:22 AM (HKT)
Kung Fu Panda 3 功夫熊貓３ will be produced in China by Shanghai Oriental DreamWorks Film & Television Technology 上海合資組建東方夢工廠公司, which today unveiled its new headquarters in Shanghai. The company also detailed its plans for film-making and a $3.12 billion theme park.
A ceremony to announce the headquarters in Shanghai's Xuhui District was attended by a heavyweight delegation including DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc CEO Jeffrey KATZENBERG, Yu Zhengsheng, member of the Politburo of the CPC Central Committee & Secretary of Shanghai Municipal Committee of the CPC, Han Zheng, mayor of Shanghai, and ZHANG Pimin 張丕民, deputy director general of the State Administration of Radio, Film & Television (SARFT) 國家廣播電影電視總局.
DreamWorks said that the new company will primarily focus on film and television content production and its derivative industries. It expects to hire up to 2,000 staff to create "animated content featuring Chinese cultural elements."
Kung Fu Panda 3 will be made in China as a co-production with an unspecified partner and is expected to be released globally in 2016. The first feature-length animated film solely created by Oriental DreamWorks is expected to be distributed worldwide in 2017.
The company said that it will build a production pipeline that matches any international animation competitor and aim to be the biggest animation operation in China. After its inaugural feature production, Oriental DreamWorks plans to release one to three event films per year.
It will also explore a full range of family entertainment business extensions, including consumer products, online games, musicals, and other live entertainment ventures.
Chief among these is the establishment of the Dream Center theme park, which it describes as "a must-see cultural and entertainment destination for tourists and Shanghai citizens alike". It will open in 2016, only one or two years after the 2014 or 2015 planned opening of Shanghai Disneyland.
"With an investment exceeding ￥20 billion ($3.15 billion), Dream Center will be built on a T-shaped block in Xuhui Riverside. Plans feature designs from a number of international architectural masters and incorporate a series of theatres, cinemas, creative enterprises, tourist attractions, restaurants and commercial facilities," the company said in a statement. The development will include "Dream Walk", the world's largest IMAX screen, to be used for high-profile film premieres and events, as well as a central theater area and an interactive animation exhibition.
"Dream Center and the neighbouring 'Media Port of the West Riverbank' will create Shanghai's new landmark: a world-class cultural destination that is envisioned to be comparable to New York's Broadway and London's West End."
Oriental DreamWorks is a joint venture established by China Media Capital (CMC) 華人文化產業投資基金, Shanghai Media Group (SMG) 上海東方傳媒集團有限公司, Shanghai Alliance Investment Ltd (SAIL) 上海聯合投資公司 and DreamWorks Animation. The Chinese companies will hold a majority stake of approximately 55% in Oriental DreamWorks and DreamWorks Animation will hold approximately 45%.