Hong Kong studio Golden Harvest has become one of the first international distributors to sign on for Ghost House Pictures' remake of Japanese director Takashi Shimizu's The Grudge (Ju-On).

The company has acquired Hong Kong and Malaysian rights to the film which will be the second production from Ghost House, the recently established genre label formed by Sam Raimi, Rob Tappert and Senator International. Taka Ichise, whose credits include Ringu, is set to produce. Ghost House's first production, Boogeyman, which Golden Harvest acquired at Cannes last year, is scheduled to start shooting in May.

Golden Harvest also pre-bought Hong Kong and Malaysian rights to The Phantom Of The Opera at the AFM. The feature version of Andrew Lloyd Webber's hit stage musical, to be directed by Joel Schumacher, is being sold internationally by UK-based sales outfit Odyssey Entertainment. Warner Bros has an option to distribute the film in North America. Principal photography is scheduled to start in the UK this autumn.

The two films join a growing list of international pre-buys on Golden Harvest's slate. The company also acquired Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill at Cannes last year and has Hong Kong, Malaysian and Singaporean rights to Chow Yun-Fat vehicle, Bulletproof Monk.