Walt Disney Co. said it’s prepared to take action to protect its intellectual property rights after performers dressed as Snow White and Captain America were sighted at Dalian Wanda Group Co.’s new theme park and entertainment complex in China.

“We vigorously protect our intellectual property and will take action to address infringement,” the company said in an e-mailed statement Monday in response to Bloomberg News queries about the characters, who resembled ones from Disney. “Our characters and stories have delighted generations, these illegal and substandard imitations unfortunately disappoint all who expect more.”

The statement from Disney, which broke its silence since billionaire Wang Jianlin recently took a jab at the world’s largest entertainment company, illustrates the escalating rivalry between the two. The Wanda chairman said just over a week ago that Disney’s “one tiger" -- its Shanghai Disney Resort set to open on June 16 -- will be no match for Wanda’s “pack of wolves,” prompting the U.S. media company to say that Wang’s comments were not “worthy of a response.”

The Disney look-alikes were spotted at the official opening of the $3.2 billion Wanda City park complex in Nanchang, the first of his conglomerate’s 15 planned theme park and entertainment projects in China that it hopes will help it unseat Disney as the world’s largest tourism operator. The companies are vying for dominance of China’s $610 billion tourism industry, which the government predicts will double by 2020 amid a growing middle class.