Transformers 4 starring Mark Wahlberg might be going overseas, and it’s for reasons that have nothing to do with story or character.
Paramount wants the next Transformers movie to be either partially or fully shot in China, using famous Chinese landmarks as set-piece locations.
Why? Because China is the fastest rising box office performer never before seen in an international market. China is now only second behind Japan in the number of people who go and buy tickets for American blockbusters. Fairly soon China is projected to surpass Japan as the number one foreign market in the world.
The problem is: the Chinese government is very picky when it comes to which American films get a theatrical release in their country. Anything content-wise that comes close to disparaging China or conflicts with state values, the film will immediately be barred from Chinese theaters.
So now American studios have to be very careful in what content they put in their biggest films. American ticket sales have been steadily declining the past decade. The studios need the Chinese market now more than ever to make their money back.
Paramount realizes that Transformers 4 has the potential to be the highest-grossing international release ever, if they set the story and shoot in China.
Michael Bay must be salivating at the thought of blowing up The Great Wall of China.