The DreamWorks campus in Glendale.

The DreamWorks campus in Glendale. (Times Community News / August 8, 2012)

DreamWorks Animation and China's largest media companies plan to invest more than $3 billion to build a sprawling entertainment, dining and shopping district in Shanghai.

A new joint venture called Oriental DreamWorks announced Monday that the company would open Dream Center — an entertainment hub with theaters, cinemas, restaurants and tourist attractions — in 2016.

The announcement marks the latest effort by Glendale-based DreamWorks and other Hollywood studios to bolster business in the world's most populous country, which this year has surpassed Japan as the world's second-largest market for movies outside the U.S.

It also fits the studio's strategy of trying to diversify its business by expanding into television shows, live entertainment and theme parks. DreamWorks said last month it had agreed to license its characters, storytelling and technology for a theme park at a long-stalled and vacant mall in the Meadowlands, N.J.

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