Shanghai Film Group isjoining forces with Warner China Film HG Group to produce contemporary drama The 601st Phone Call.

Director Feng Xiaogangserves as the producer of the film while TV actor Zhang Guoli takes thedirector's seat. Hong Kong actress Cecilia Cheung and Zhou Bichang, winner of China's top-rated SuperGirl TV contest, will lead the cast.

Warner China Film - a jointventure between Warner Bros, state-owned China Film and the privately-ownedHengdian Group - is investing 20% of the film's $3.12m budget.

The film, which startedproduction last weekend, is based on the true story of a media sensation thatoccurred in China last year when 600 celebrities' phone numbers were exposed to thepublic by a tabloid newspaper.

It marks the second film appearanceof Zhou Bichang, last year's winner of the SuperGirl singing contest, China's answer to AmericanIdol, which created a nationwide frenzy drawing 400 million viewers. Herfirst film appearance was McDull, TheAlumni, produced by Peter Chan.

Meanwhile, Shanghai FilmGroup also announced that puppet animation film Strange Boy Of Huashan Mountain 2 will be released in China in June after two years in production. SFG isrecruiting celebrities including SuperGirl winners to voice the cast.

Based on a Chinese folklore storycalled The Lotus Lamp, the first Strange Boy movie was released by SFG in1984 and grossed $3m. The long-awaited sequel is directed by Hu Zhaohong.