Chinese cinema operator Time Antaeus Group, which is entering film production, unveiled its production arm, Beijing Time Entertainment International, and its debut three-picture slate at the on-going Shanghai International Film Festival.

Action comedy Playboy Cops, which was previously announced at Cannes as a co-production with Hong Kong BIG Media Group, will start shooting next week. The $2.2m film will be directed by Jingle Ma with the two rich cops to be played by Chinese actor Chen Kun and Hong Kong's Shawn Yue. Also starring are Eric Tsang, Simon Yam and actress Linda Chung.

Meanwhile, $10m mythical thriller Painted Skin will star Donnie Yen and be directed by Wilson Yip and Andy Wing-keung Chin. Five Chinese film companies - Time Antaeus, Shanghai Film Group, Ninxia Film Studio, Beijing New Film Association and Beijing Ding Long Da Media Ltd - will co-finance the film with Hong Kong 's Salon Films and Singapore 's Raintree Pictures.

Set during the Yuan Dynasty, the film tells the story of a beautiful fairy who turns into a bloodthirsty demoness who devours the skins and hearts of the men she seduces in order to maintain immortal beauty. The lead actress is yet to be announced and shooting will start in late September, according to Time Entertainment president Lu Tao.

Time Entertainment is also preparing a car-chase action film to be co-produced with German's Action Concept (Der Clown) in the later half of the year.

Established as a real estate developer, then an e-cinema operator, Time Antaeus began to expand into traditional cinema management earlier this year. The group is now jointly operating three cinemas formerly owned by Warner Brothers International Cinemas with China Film Group.

The three cinemas, which are located in Chongqing, Changsha and Nanchang, together with four existing cinemas owned by Time Antaeus are now under the 'Movie Station' cinema chain label.