The Shanghai Film Studio is pressing ahead with an expansion of its movie-driven theme park.

By October, Shanghai will open the second part of a $72m three-phase film park at the old Chedun Film Studio, half an hour from the city centre in Songjiang. The current 17-hectare site already boasts street scenes, imperial palaces, mini submarines and a crashed plane.

The studio's founders aim to have a 200-hectare site in five years time, adding an animal kingdom, new rides and resorts.

The studios clearly believe that some genuine history - the Chedun studios have been home to some 20 films including Imperial Palace Of The Han Dynasty and Zhang Yimou's Shanghai Triad - will distinguish it from the other theme parks in the region. These include a European city, an American Dream Park and two aquatic-themed sites.

But current theme parks have suffered from a conundrum. Prices have been too high for an average family, while the attractions were too dull or poorly executed for the country's moneyed middle and upper classes, who had often seen bigger and better fare overseas.