Deep Sea

Source: October Media

‘Deep Sea’

Tian Xiaopeng’s Deep Sea has been snapped up by distributors across Europe, Asia and the Middle East ahead of its North America premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival.

Amsterdam-based sales outfit Fortissimo Films has closed deals on the animated feature in France (KMBO), Italy (Lucky Red), Germany (Leonine Studios), Turkey, UAE (Sky Entertainment), and Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia (Aike Limited). The film will be released theatrically this summer in most territories.

It was announced today (April 18) that the film has been selected for Tribeca’s Viewpoints section. The international premiere of the film took place at the Berlinale in February, where it played in the Generation Kplus competition.

The 3D animated feature marks the second feature by director Tian, whose debut Monkey King: Hero Is Back became the highest-grossing animated film ever in China when it took $138m in 2015. The current record holder is 2019 animation Nezha, whose producer, Yi Qiao, is the producer of Deep Sea.

The film was released in China during the lucrative Chinese New Year period and grossed $133m (CNY918m).

The fantasy adventure tells the story of Shenxiu, a girl who has felt a deep sadness since being abandoned by her mother. While on a family cruise, she falls into the sea and breaks into the Deep Sea restaurant where she meets inventive underwater chef Nanhe and embarks on a journey between dreams and reality. The cast includes Wang Tingwen and Su Xin.

Tian and his team developed a CG technique based around particles, creating 3D images from abstract Chinese ink painting, which is used throughout the film. It is produced by Yi’s animation studio October Media and Beijing-based Enlight Pictures.