2 April 2013 9:31 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

The “Transformers” film franchise has found a few friends in China to get the fourth installment made.

Just don’t call it a co-production.

Paramount Pictures has brokered what it calls a “co-operation agreement” with state-backed broadcaster CCTV’s China Movie Channel and Jiaflix Enterprises to produce “Transformers 4,” which Michael Bay is returning to helm.

CCTV comes under the umbrella of the powerful State Administration of Radio Film and Television.

Deal essentially means that China’s version of the BBC and Netflix will help produce and market the film in the country, helping secure filming locations, cast local talent, and manage post-production and theatrical promotions there. Studio can file for official co-production status, granted by the Chinese government, at a later time.

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but third pic was produced for around $200 million. Relationship with China Movie Channel and Jiaflix does include an undisclosed »


- Marc Graser

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