A live-actiontake on popular animated character McDull, martial arts legend Huo Yuanjia and a comedy about shopping are set to battle itout in Hong Kong and other Chinese-speaking territories next Chinese New Year.
Peter Ho-sun Chanand McDull creator Brian Tseare producing McDull
The first two McDull animatedfeatures - My Life AsMcDull and
Also set forrelease over the Chinese New Year holiday are Ronny Yu's action epic
Fearless, the latest production from dynamo Hong Kong producer Bill Kong, is based on the true story of martial arts legend Huo Yuanjia. Focus Features has aslew of Western rights.
All these filmsare also aiming for release in mainland China and other Chinese-speakingterritories over the holiday which falls on Jan 29 in 2006. But Chinese NewYear is not the guaranteed pot of gold that it used to be for Chinese-languagemovies. Local productions used to dominate this period, when traditionallyChinese families go to the cinema together, but this year Pixaranimation The Incredibleswas by far the biggest hit over the Chinese New Year holiday in Hong Kong.
Also, the growinginfluence of the mainland market means that Hong Kong producers are targetingother holidays in addition to Chinese New Year.
During the recentNational Day holiday, Jackie Chan blockbuster The Myth was released across Chinese-speaking territories alongwith Media Asia's Wait 'Til You're Older and StanleyKwan's Everlasting Regret. Althoughit usually produces a film for Chinese New Year, Media Asia has nothing plannedfor the 2006 holiday and is focused instead on releasing Alan Mak and Felix Chong's
Likewise,Beijing-based Huayi Brothers, which used to roll outa Feng Xiaogang blockbusterevery Chinese New Year has nothing scheduled for next year's holiday. Insteadit plans to release A Chinese Tall Story, a co-production with Hong Kong'sEmperor Motion Pictures, this Christmas and Feng'snew film The Banquet, a co-production with Media Asia, in December 2006.
Now that HongKong producers are targeting almost every production at both the Hong Kong andmainland markets, Screen Internationalhas expanded its production listings to include mainland Chinese productions. Alarge proportion of these are co-productions with Hong Kong, while others -such as Ann Hui's ThePostmodern Life Of My Aunt starring Chow Yun-fat - involve Hong Kong directors and talent althoughthere's no Hong Kong investment involved. The lines between Hong Kong andChinese production are now so blurred that it's become almost meaningless toview them as separate production centres.
But that doesn'tmean that both China and Hong Kong aren't working with many other territories.The listings below also include Hong Kong films co-produced with Japan, SouthKorea, Thailand, Singapore and Malaysia and Chinese films co-produced with theUS, Taiwan, Finland and France. These include films such as
As the listingsdemonstrate, Chinese film-makers are increasingly becoming part of aninternational production industry where national borders have much lesssignificance than big-name stars, directors with a proven track record andstories that can travel.For full Hong andChina listings, clickhere