×

2018 Local Tax Payments by Huayi Brothers, Some Major Chinese Stars Revealed

The Chinese city that is home to the world’s largest film studio has released lists of its top registered taxpayers in 2018, revealing the payments by major production companies and movie stars at a time when new tax regulations have upended the industry.

In years past, the small city of Dongyang in coastal Zhejiang province attracted big entertainment companies to Hengdian, a town under its jurisdiction, with preferential tax benefits and the massive Hengdian World Studios complex. The area now gives an indication of what lies in store for the Chinese movie industry as authorities order companies to file and pay back taxes accrued under benefit schemes considered legal at the time.

A list released Tuesday on Dongyang’s official WeChat account – but since deleted – ranked Huayi Brothers as the highest-paying entertainment company in the region and fifth highest taxpayer overall, having coughed up RMB326 million ($48.2 million) in 2018. Dongyang Daylight Entertainment, the company behind the hit 2015 TV show “Nirvana in Fire,” came in ninth, forking over RMB129 million ($19 million).

Chinese superstar Lay Zhang, the EXO K-pop group member who hit up the Grammys last weekend, “Tiny Times” actress Yang Mi, and Jing Tian, the actress who played opposite Matt Damon in “The Great Wall,” were the three most-taxed artists with studios in the region, having paid RMB19.13 million ($2.8 million), RMB15.53 million ($2.3 million) and RMB10.43 million ($1.5 million) in 2018, respectively.

Other celebrity-owned studios listed included those of singer Hua Chenyu (with taxes of RMB7.92 million), popular Uighur actress Dilraba Dilmurat (RMB6.6 million), and another EXO heartthrob, Lu Han (RMB6.34 million).

The figures likely only reflect normal taxes for the year and do not include the controversial back taxes, said Chinese financial publication Caixin, citing a legal expert.

More Film

  • FX's 'Snowfall' Panel TCA Winter Press

    John Singleton Hospitalized After Suffering Stroke

    UPDATED with statements from John Singleton’s family and FX Networks John Singleton, the Oscar nominated director and writer of “Boyz N’ the Hood,” has suffered a stroke. Sources confirm to Variety that Singleton checked himself into the hospital earlier this week after experiencing pain in his leg. The stroke has been characterized by doctors as [...]

  • 'Curse of La Llorona' Leads Slow

    'Curse of La Llorona' Leads Slow Easter Weekend at the Box Office

    New Line’s horror pic “The Curse of La Llorona” will summon a solid $25 million debut at the domestic box office, leading a quiet Easter weekend before Marvel’s “Avengers: Endgame” hits theaters on April 26. The James Wan-produced “La Llorona,” playing in 3,372 theaters, was a hit with hispanic audiences, who accounted for nearly 50% [...]

  • Jim Jarmusch in 'Carmine Street Guitars'

    Film Review: 'Carmine Street Guitars'

    “Carmine Street Guitars” is a one-of-a-kind documentary that exudes a gentle, homespun magic. It’s a no-fuss, 80-minute-long portrait of Rick Kelly, who builds and sells custom guitars out of a modest storefront on Carmine Street in New York’s Greenwich Village, and the film touches on obsessions that have been popping up, like fragrant weeds, in [...]

  • Missing Link Laika Studios

    ‘Missing Link’ Again Tops Studios’ TV Ad Spending

    In this week’s edition of the Variety Movie Commercial Tracker, powered by the TV ad measurement and attribution company iSpot.tv, Annapurna Pictures claims the top spot in spending for the second week in a row with “Missing Link.” Ads placed for the animated film had an estimated media value of $5.91 million through Sunday for [...]

  • Little Woods

    Film Review: 'Little Woods'

    So much of the recent political debate has focused on the United States’ southern border, and on the threat of illegal drugs and criminals filtering up through Mexico. But what of the north, where Americans traffic opiates and prescription pills from Canada across a border that runs nearly three times as long? “Little Woods” opens [...]

  • Beyonce's Netflix Deal Worth a Whopping

    Beyonce's Netflix Deal Worth a Whopping $60 Million (EXCLUSIVE)

    Netflix has become a destination for television visionaries like Shonda Rhimes and Ryan Murphy, with deals worth $100 million and $250 million, respectively, and top comedians like Chris Rock and Dave Chappelle ($40 million and $60 million, respectively). The streaming giant, which just announced it’s added nearly 10 million subscribers in Q1, is honing in [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content