Leg­endary En­ter­tain­ment

Variety - - Top Billing -

Dalian Wanda’s deal to buy Leg­endary at up to $3.5 bil­lion was so off the scale that it al­legedly an­gered Chi­nese Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping and trig­gered the early 2017 cur­rency con­trols that have crimped Chi­nese deal­mak­ing ever since. With fran­chises in­clud­ing “King Kong,” “Pa­cific Rim” and “Juras­sic World,” Leg­endary’s price tag should be around $1 bil­lion. It’s not clear whether its chang­ing stu­dio al­liances are good news or bad: Dis­tri­bu­tion re­cently re­turned to Warner Bros., after a five-year fling with Uni­ver­sal was not re­newed. Wanda, which owns AMC, re­mains the world’s largest cinema op­er­a­tor, and would love to sell Leg­endary if only it didn’t lose face.

OUT­LOOK: Tread­ing wa­ter.

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