Super heroes are big business -- and with Warner Bros. and Disney locking down their in-house heroes of DC and Marvel for internal use only, outside film companies are looking elsewhere to find the next superhero cinematic success story..
The New York Times is reporting that Beijing film company DMG Entertainment is making a multi-million dollar investment in Valiant Entertainment, with a focus on film franchises.
"Valiant's iconic stable of intellectual property and world class management team coupled with DMG's unmatched skill with entertainment brand building in China make a formidable partnership," said Peter Cuneo, Valiant Entertainment's Chairman. "We will look forward to introducing some of the most popular superheroes of all time to the world's fastest growing market across all media forms.”
DMG Entertainment CEO Dan Mintz is quoted by NYT as calling Valiant's characters "the last independent massive comic universe," pointing to "comic superheroes" being highly sought after for film franchises.
DMG Entertainment first entered the the superhero genre in film with 2013's Iron Man 3. Acting as a production partner with Disney, DMG provided capitol and access for the film's distribution in China as a co-production with a Chinese company. In exchange, Chinese elements were added to the film -- as well as a Chinese-only cut of the film with extra scenes.
Although the exact dollar amount is unknown, NYT calls it a "nine-figure" investment intended to finance feature films as well as "publishing, television and licensing opportunities." The report goes on to state that the films will be developed primarily for the United States and China, with plans for Chinese-language publishing, animation, merchandise and theme park attractions also present.