Christopher Spicer Quoted on Chinese Investment in Hollywood
For its article “Ties between Hollywood and Chinese film industries growing stronger,” Daily Journal quoted Akin Gump entertainment partner Christopher Spicer on Chinese investors’ interest in purchasing a “Big Six” studio, the Big Six commonly considered to be Universal, Disney, Warner Bros., Fox, Sony and Paramount.
Although 2016 opened with the $3.5 billion purchase of the Legendary Entertainment production company by Chinese movie chain giant Dalian Wanda Group Co. Ltd.—and with Wanda reportedly in talks with Paramount—Spicer noted that a studio purchase by a Chinese buyer would face more U.S. government scrutiny than did the Legendary deal.
In support of this, he noted a letter sent to the U.S. Treasury Secretary and the U.S. Trade Representative by incoming Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) in 2016, in which he asked for a closer look at Chinese investments in the United States.
Spicer also noted the friction between President-elect Donald Trump and Chinese officials as another factor.
He closed by noting, “To the extent that a Chinese company wants to finance a slate of co-production movies, that may not set off alarm bells. But if Paramount or a major studio gets put up for sale this year and a Chinese company wants to buy it, there's going to be a lot of heavy scrutiny on that company.”