China is known to have a rather loose interpretation of intellectual property rights, but an upcoming animated children's film there is really taking this borrowing to previously unseen heights. Called The Autobots, which certainly couldn't be related to The Transformers, the movie appears to blatantly rip-off Pixar's Cars franchise as closely as possible.

Starting with the most obvious, the vehicles in the film appear nearly identical to the ones in Cars, and the one in the middle of the poster barely tweaks the design of Lightning McQueen. There's also a talking Jeep in The Autobots that has a significant resemblance to Sarge from Pixar's franchise.

Using a name from Transformers and designs from Cars is just the beginning, though. The Batmobile from the Tim Burton film appears to make a cameo. Also, one of The Autobots' posters seems to depict Cinderella's castle in the background.

According to Kotaku, a spokesperson for the film told a Japanese TV show that The Autobots isn't a copy of Cars because the Chinese movie has people as characters in it, which doesn't happen in Pixar's franchise.

If The Autobots performs well enough in China to get a sequel, maybe the producers could take their borrowing of ideas one step further. An intriguing idea would be to include some of the country's own automotive copies as characters. An especially bizarre choice might be Longer's miniature Range Rover...

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