A Beijing property developer says it has terminated cooperation with the new Transformers movie, wants Paramount Pictures to make edits to it and is asking China to suspend screenings of the blockbuster film.
The company owns the Pangu Plaza, a dragon-shaped hotel, office and mall complex that stretches the length of half a dozen football fields and is featured in Transformers: Age of Extinction.
The Beijing Pangu Investment Co Ltd said in a statement on Saturday that Paramount and two Chinese associate partners failed to fulfil their obligations in a sponsorship deal.
“The loss of rights and interests not only caused the Pangu company’s original business plan to fail, incurring huge losses, more seriously, it has affected Pangu Plaza’s image and reputation,” the statement said.
Pangu said it is suing its Chinese partners for contract fraud and demanding that Paramount delete scenes from the movie that feature images of its logo or properties. It said it has also asked the Chinese government’s film regulator to suspend or stop screenings of the movie, which is due to open in Chinese cinemas June 27.
Pangu says it provided at least 10 million yuan ($A1.73 million) in funding and that its Chinese partners never delivered on pledges to hold the movie premiere at Pangu’s hotel and feature images of its property in trailers and movie posters.
Instead, the movie’s worldwide premiere was held in Hong Kong on Thursday and was attended by stars including Mark Wahlberg and the good-guy robot, Optimus Prime.
The film’s debut in the southern Chinese metropolis ahead of its launch in New York next week is the latest sign of Hollywood’s increasing focus on China’s booming film market.
China is the world’s second-largest film market, with box-office revenues up by nearly a third in the first quarter after rising 27.5 per cent last year to $US3.6 billion ($A3.90 billion).