Japan’s ColorBird Inc and Malaysia’s Barnet Books are joining forces to co-produce a horror film directed by Japanese filmmaker Shinji Aoyama.

Set in Malaysia, the film tells the story of a Japanese couple who set up home on a plantation and find themselves attacked by supernatural phenomena.

The cast will be primarily Japanese with a mixed Japanese-Malaysian crew. Financing will be split evenly between Japanese and Malaysian investors. Empire Film Solution will handle distribution in Malaysia, while Japanese production company Roads To Shangri-La Inc has signed on as an investor in Japan.

ColorBird Inc will handle international sales outside Malaysia. Principal photography is scheduled to start in early 2016.

“We’re very excited to be working on this film project with Barnet Books. Its unique and original premise is not just intriguing but coupled with Aoyama’s direction should be a vision that is both distinctive yet commercially accessible,” said ColorBird Inc CEO Yasushi Miyamae

Barnet Books head of content Rahmat Adam said: “Yasushi and I have been yearning to work together for a years on a film project and this horror film is a perfect vehicle for both of our companies. With story elements primarily drawn from Malaysia and with Japanese characters in key roles, this is a collaboration that fits perfectly in both of our companies’ vision which is to make commercially accessible films for the world audience.”

Aoyama previously won the FIPRESCI prize and Prize of the Ecumenical Jury at Cannes for Eureka (2000). His credits also include Sad Vacation (2007) and The Backwater (2013).

Before launching ColorBird, Miyamae spent seven years in international sales at Tokyo Broadcasting System (TBS).