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US rubber-stamps Legendary-Wanda deal

Scripted-logo-460_2ColonyUS regulatory authorities have approved the deal that will see Legendary Entertainment pass into Dalian Wanda’s hands, marking the first time a US studio has come under Chinese control.

China-based Dalian Wanda’s US$3.5 billion deal to buy the Hollywood studio has got the greenlight from the US Department of Commerce less than a month after the agreement was announced.

The deal will be the biggest US-Sino entertainment deal to date, and will create the world’s biggest revenue-generating film company, according to Dalian Wanda.

“It is quite a feat for an acquisition to be approved by the US Department of Commerce in such a short time,” Dalian Wanda said in a statement on Tuesday. “This reflects the positive attitude that the U.S. government has towards Sino-US cultural exchange.”

The agreement will see Dalian Wanda take full control of Thomas Tull’s Legendary, with other investors such as SoftBank and Wadd & Reed cashing out.

Legendary is behind films such as Godzilla, the Batman trilogy and Man of Streel, and TVs series including USA Network’s Colony (pictured) and Syfy’s science fiction serial The Expanse.

Chinese national development and commerce authorities still need to greenlight the agreement, though US news outlets suggest there will be little resistance as China’s government is keen to support local businesses aiming at the US market.