BEIJING Oct 9 Steven Spielberg's Amblin
Partners and Alibaba Pictures Group Ltd, the film
studio unit of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding
Ltd, said on Sunday they will co-produce and finance
films for global and Chinese audiences.
They will also collaborate on the marketing, distribution
and merchandising of Amblin Partner films in China, the
companies said in a joint statement.
Under the terms of their partnership, Alibaba Pictures will
also acquire a minority stake in Amblin Partners, which is
chaired by Spielberg, the award-winning U.S. movie director and
Amblin Partners creates film, television and digital content
under the Amblin Entertainment, DreamWorks Pictures and
Participant Media brands.
Hong Kong-listed Alibaba Pictures has yet to release any
films, although the company formerly known as ChinaVision Media
Group Ltd has several projects in production.
Alibaba Pictures began investing in Hollywood films in 2015
with its stake in 'Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation'. It was
an investor in this year's blockbusters 'Star Trek Beyond' and
'Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows'.
Billionaire Jack Ma's Alibaba Group paid about $800 million
for a controlling stake in ChinaVision Media in 2014. The
company later became known as Alibaba Pictures.
The investment was part of a wave of acquisitions by big
Chinese companies looking to expand their Hollywood footprint
while bringing more Western films to China, set to soon surpass
the United States as the world's biggest movie market.
Dalian Wanda Group Co, the conglomerate controlled by
China's richest man Wang Jianlin, is partnering with Sony
Pictures under which Wanda will market Sony Pictures' films and
co-finance some upcoming movie releases of Sony Corp's film unit
In January, Wanda paid $3.5 billion for a controlling stake
in U.S. film studio Legendary Entertainment. The group has also
since said it would start co-investing in global blockbusters
(Reporting by Ryan Woo; Editing by Paul Tait)