Toho Cinemas under Antimonopoly Investigation

Politics

Tokyo, March 4 (Jiji Press)--The Japan Fair Trade Commission is investigating Toho Cinemas Ltd. for allegedly pressuring movie studios in violation of the antimonopoly law, people familiar with the matter said Friday.

Toho Cinemas urged movie studios to give priority to it over rival theater chains in film distribution and not to distribute films to rivals, according to the people.

In addition, Toho Cinemas threatened to sever ties with studios if they do not meet those demands, according to the people.

Toho Co. <9602>, the parent of Toho Cinemas, said the company will fully cooperate with the FTC's investigation.

Toho Cinemas runs 677 screens at 72 theaters across Japan. It posted 161,893 million yen in domestic box office revenue with 114,818,000 visitors last year, according to Motion Picture Producers Association of Japan Inc.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press