×

Wanda’s Wang Jianlin Criticizes Shanghai Disneyland

Wang Jianlin, chairman of China’s Wanda group, took a couple of potshots Sunday at the soon-to-open Shanghai Disneyland.

He said that the $5.5 billion Shanghai Disney Resort, which opens for business on June 16, will struggle to become profitable in China. He criticized the characters at the park and warned about Shanghai’s poor weather.

Wang, who is one of China’s top two richest businessmen, made the remarks in an hour long televised interview on state-owned China Central Television.

He suggested that SDR’s costs were higher than those of Wanda and represented a “serious challenge” to the park’s profitability. Those costs he said forced SDR to make its entry prices higher than Wanda’s own location based entertainment facilities.

Wanda last week announced that it had broken ground on its 11th major theme park in China, near Guilin. That park is to cost $2.5 billion and open in 2020.

“On top of this China already has Wanda – they really ought not to have come to China at all,” said Wang. Wanda has a range of entertainment properties that stretch from China’s largest private sector cinema chain through to the recently acquired Hollywood producer Legendary Entertainment. It has spent billions buying overseas assets including the Infront sports marketing company, a 20% stake in Atletico Madrid and cinema chains Hoyts in Australia and AMC in North America.

A spokesman for Disney told Variety that Wang’s comments “were not worthy of response.”

SDR is a joint venture between The Walt Disney Company and Shanghai Shendi Group comprised of two owner companies (Shanghai International Theme Park Company Limited and Shanghai International Theme Park Associated Facilities Company Limited) and a management company (Shanghai International Theme Park and Resort Management Company Limited). Shanghai Shendi Group holds 57% of the shares and Disney holds the remaining 43% of shares of the owner companies. Disney has a 70% stake and Shanghai Shendi Group has a 30% stake in the joint venture management company.

More Biz

  • pharrell brain child show

    'Blurred Lines' Flares Up Again - Marvin Gaye Family Claims Pharrell Perjured Himself

    Like a zombie that just won’t stay dead, the “Blurred Lines” case keeps coming back. While the 2015 verdict, in which Pharrell Williams, Robin Thicke and the song’s publisher were ordered to pay nearly $5 million to Marvin Gaye’s family for infringing upon the late singer’s 1977 hit “Got to Give It Up,” was basically [...]

  • WGA Agency Packaging Fight Placeholder Writer

    WGA-Agency Showdown: Role of Showrunners at Heart of Legal Arguments

    The Los Angeles courtroom of U.S. District Judge Andre Birotte was packed with well-dressed lawyers on Friday morning, eager to watch a high-stakes brawl between Hollywood’s largest talent agencies and the Writers Guild of America. Birotte allowed only four lawyers from each side to sit at each table, leaving the vast majority of the attorneys [...]

  • 700700 + Ted Turner Dedication. December

    Ted Turner Tributes Established With WarnerMedia Gift to University of Georgia

    WarnerMedia has established a scholarship, internship program and exhibition hall at the University of Georgia to be named after maverick media mogul Ted Turner. The company has gifted $550,000 to the university to create the Ted Turner Scholarship Fund, for students attending the school’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, which is also the [...]

  • WGA Agents Contract Tug of War

    Judge Leans Toward Agencies' Position in Writers Guild Antitrust Suit

    A federal judge indicated on Friday that he will allow the three major agencies to pursue their antitrust lawsuit against the Writers Guild of America. The WGA has urged U.S. District Judge Andre Birotte to throw out the suit, arguing that its actions in its ongoing battle with the agencies are protected under antitrust law. [...]

  • Keli LeeStep Up Women Network 9th

    Keli Lee Exits ABC Studios International as Disney Considers Division's Fate (EXCLUSIVE)

    ABC veteran Keli Lee has left the international arm of ABC Studios as Disney considers the future of the London-based content unit, Variety has learned. Sources said Disney has told the creative community that there “has been a re-evaluation of ABC Studios International” and that it is re-assessing “the creative direction” of the business. There [...]

  • Biggest Scandals Feuds and Apologies of

    Biggest Scandals, Feuds and Apologies of 2019

    Variety looks back on some of the biggest scandals, feuds and apologies of 2019: College Admissions Scandal Wealthy parents including Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin were charged with bribing school officials to get their unqualified kids into prestigious universities. Shane Gillis Executives at “SNL” hired, then fired, Gillis in September, before the new season started, [...]

  • Biggest Media Moments of 2019

    From 'Catch & Kill' to Shepard Smith: The Biggest Media Moments of 2019

    Variety looks back on some of the most memorable media events of 2019: ‘Catch & Kill’ Reopens Wounds at NBC News Ronan Farrow’s book relitigates his complaints that NBC News tried to tamp down his investigation of harassment and assault allegations against Harvey Weinstein. NBC News denies the claim. The book contains new allegations against [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content