Fledgling Ivanhoe Pictures has partnered up with Nina Jacobson and Brad Simpson’s Color Force on Crazy Rich Asians and will finance and co-produce the Kevin Kwan’s bestseller adaptation.

Color Force will oversee development of the script in conjunction with Kelly Carmichael for Ivanhoe. Kwan will serve as executive producer.

“When we talked about our dream partner for Crazy Rich Asians, we envisioned a company that had a real presence in both the United States and Asia,” said Color Force’s Nina Jacobson. 

“That is what is so gratifying about Ivanhoe. Not only does the Ivanhoe team love the book the way we do, it also is committed to making a film that will hold universal appeal in the marketplace.”   

Ivanhoe’s John Penotti said that newly formed company was pleased to discover a story so soon that seemed like a suitable fit.

“The moment we finished Kevin’s brilliantly romantic, funny and daring novel, we knew we had to be involved,” said Penotti. “Kevin’s perfectly realised milieu, matched with Nina’s and Brad’s exuberance and talent for producing smart, exciting films, makes this a perfect pairing for Ivanhoe.”

United Talent Agency packaged the project.

Financier Robert Friedland, Penotti and Beijing-based media veteran Ray Chen launched Ivanhoe Pictures during Toronto in September.