Published: 01:52, 21 June 2017
Developers building a giant theme park in Kent are poised to announce a shock split with Paramount Pictures, KentOnline understands.
London Resort Company Holdings first revealed their plans for the £3.2 billion London Paramount entertainment resort in 2012 and are expected to submit a planning application this year.
The Hollywood studio’s licencing arm was providing much of the intellectual property for the rides and attractions, including from its back catalogue of blockbuster films such as Mission: Impossible, Transformers and the Godfather.
However, it is understood the resort’s developers and Paramount have been unable to agree terms on some of the rights to major films and are expected to announce they are parting ways today.
Sources within the industry said other major studios have been approached, with a view to creating rides based on films from a range of different companies.
The resort, set to be built on the Swanscombe Peninsula between Gravesend and Dartford, already has agreements to use the intellectual property of the BBC and Aardman Animations – the creators of Wallace and Gromit.
Last week, bosses announced a deal with InterContinental Hotels Group to open a series of hotels at the site with 4,000 guest rooms.
However, the Paramount resort plans have been beset by difficulties since the attraction was first put forward, with the promise of creating 27,000 jobs.
Its opening date has been put back three times – currently scheduled for 2022 – as developers have grappled with the complexity of the planning process for such a large resort.
It has also faced opposition from many businesses and landowners who will be forced to move if the project is given the go-ahead by ministers under a special planning route known as a development consent order.
London Resort Company Holdings and Paramount could not be reached for comment.