Korea’s Showbox/Mediaplex has entered into an investment and distribution partnership with Chinese studio Huayi Brothers for its upcoming sports action drama Mr. Go 3D.
Huayi Brothers has agreed to invest $5m into the film, which is guaranteed a 5,000-screen release across China in summer 2013 and wide releases in Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan. More than half of China’s 10,000 screens are 3D-equipped.
Directed by Kim Yong-hwa (200 Pounds Beauty, Take Off), the film is based on Heo Young-man’s comic The 7th Baseball Club about a young Chinese circus ringmaster and her baseball-playing gorilla who are scouted into the Korean baseball league. The gorilla will be a work of state-of-the-art rendering, while the human cast is headed by Chinese actress Xu Jiao and Korean actors Sung Dong-il and Kim Kang-woo.
While many Korean films have previously been exported to the mainland China market, Showbox said Mr. Go 3D stands apart as an official Korea-China co-production which is being lined up as a major summer blockbuster release.
“We were confident of director Kim’s past track records and made this decision for his ability to connect with his audiences,” said a Huayi Brothers rep in a statement.
“There’s a lot of pressure concerning investing in blockbuster projects in the market as of late, but this deal breathes international confidence in Mr. Go 3D,” said Showbox/Mediaplex COO Chris Jung.
Mr. Go 3D is currently in production, with Dexter Films as the production company and Contents Eye as co-producer, and will be added to Showbox’s slate at the upcoming Cannes market. Showbox has world rights excluding China, Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan which are handled by Huayi Brothers.