EXCLUSIVE: Sales deal ahead of wide theatrical release in China.

UK-based animation specialist SC Films International has boarded sales rights to 3D family animation film Monkey King Returns, which is due to get a wide theatrical release in China this summer.

Simon Crowe’s SC struck the deal with producers Flame Node Entertainment Limited.

Monkey King Returns, based on a Chinese legend, charts the story of the once powerful ‘Monkey King’ who breaks free from imprisonment with the help of a young boy to save a besieged village.

Chinese production and distribution outfit Flame Node – producer of Rollercoaster and distributor of titles including The Nutcracker 3D and The Snow Queen franchise - produces with October Animation and Haute Rout.

Director is Tian Xiao Peng, while the Chinese voice-over talent includes Tong Zi Rong and Zhang Lei.

Music comes from Raymond Wong, and features a song by Chan Kit EE.

SC is currently working on the English dubbed version whichis due to be completed for Cannes.

Simon Crowe said: “The legend of the Monkey King is such a great story, and Flame Node has delivered a fast-paced, visually stunning and funny action-packed film that I believe can travel world-wide. The Chinese 3,000+ screen release this summer is a great start!”.

SC’s healthy animation slate includes Yellowbird from TeamTo, Animal Crackerz from Dan Krech and John Williams and Wish from Prana Studios.

Animation is currently going through a mini-boom with sellers and distributors, who are seeing gains in the [increasingly sophisticated] genre’s ability to find theatrical bookings during less competitive day-time slots and digital returns thanks to the growing number of platforms available in-home and to younger generations on a range of devices.