• Universal Studios Hollywood 23rd Annual 'Christmas In Spring' Charity Event

Universal Studios Hollywood 23rd Annual 'Christmas In Spring' Charity Event (Photo : Valerie Macon/Getty Images)

By 2020, the theme park battle in China turns into a three-corner fight among giants with the planned opening of a Universal theme park in Beijing.

In four years’ time, Dalian Wanda would have several theme parks open in other Chinese cities such as Jinan and Chongqing, while Disneyland Shanghai would likely continue attracting Chinese residents and Asian tourists.

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The planned Universal theme parks would feature characters from DreamWorks Animation films, following Universal’s recent acquisition of DreamWorks which boosted the company’s ability to produce animated films. Steve Burke, CEO of NBC Universal, in a talk with analysts at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2016 Media, Communications & Entertainment Conference, says visitors to the upcoming Universal theme parks should expect to see DreamWorks characters, reported Orlando Sentinel.

“Madagascar,” “Kung Fu Panda” and “How to Train Your Dragon” are among the franchises of DreamWorks, while it was also the distributor of “Shrek.” Visitors could expect to see pandas, dragons, penguins and Shrek – who is already found in Universal Orlando because of a licensing agreement – in new Universal theme parks, added Burke.

Current Universal Parks and Resorts locations are in Orlando, Hollywood and Osaka, Japan where Universal acquired a majority stake in a Japan Park.

Burke said Beijing officials invited Universal to open a theme park in the capital city where it would be the biggest U.S. theme park, which Universal would be 30-40 percent owner with Beijing Shouhuan Tourism Investment as co-owner. He said hundreds of people are working on the park’s attractions.

Meanwhile for Chinese kids who are into science, Chinafilminsider reported that Kuangchi Science will invest 10 billion yuan, or $1.5 billion) on a space-travel theme park in Hangzhou. Kuangchi, a Hong Kong-listed company, is China’s version of SpaceX. Its planned theme park would include a high-altitude balloon called “Traveller” which the firm hopes would ferry tourists into near-outer space.