Friday, January 11, 2013

Hollywood's Chinese Theater Naming Rights Bought By Chinese TV Manufacturer

The Hollywood Boulevard landmark will now be known as the TCL Chinese Theater as part of a $5 million deal.

As American films invade China, theaters stateside are being taken over by Chinese companies.

Grauman's Chinese Theater, the Hollywood Boulevard landmark built in 1927 and Los Angeles' most famed movie and premiere venue, will now be known as TCL Chinese Theater as part of a 10-year, $5 million deal with the TV manufacturer TCL. The company, based in China, is the fourth largest maker of televisions in the world, and is looking to get a foothold in the American market.

The theater is still heavily used, as the preferred location for Hollywood red carpet premieres. It draws four million visitors a year.

The LA Times reports that the deal includes a marketing campaign to promote both Tinsletown and the theater, as well as the obligation to fund improvements to the structure built 85 years ago by Sid Grauman. The deal comes after producers Ellie Samaha and Don Kushner bought the theater from Warner Bros. and Viacom in April of 2011. It was originally built with architectural elements from China, including bells and pagodas, and was declared a landmark in 1968.

China's Wanda Group finalized a purchase of the AMC movie theater chain in September for $2.6 billion, and pledged $500 million in renovations to the chain's various facilities.

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