Tom DeSanto, whose credits include X-Men and Transformers, has signed on to join the production team of US-China co-produced fantasy trilogy Gods.

DeSanto will join Taipei and LA-based producer Steve Chicorel and Beijing-based Chen Baiyi as producer. He will lead produce and have approvals over all creative aspects of the trilogy. The deal was signed between Chen’s Beijing-based Yi Shang Media and DeSanto.

The Gods trilogy novel was based on the Chinese classic “The Creation of the Gods”, a fantastical interpretation of the demise of the Shang Dynasty (1700-1100 BC) and the rise of the Zhou Dynasty (1066-25 6BC).

One of the main features of Gods is the 108 demi gods in the story each with unique powers. DeSanto, who describes the story as “Lord of the Rings meets X-Men”, will adapt the story into screenplays.

Yi Shang Media, whose credits include animated film Little Big Panda (2011), has submitted the project to China’s State Administration of Radio Film and Television (SARFT) and it is now approved for shooting.

According to Chicorel, who was responsible for closing the deal with DeSanto and Yi Shang Media, the production team is in talks with US-based companies to join the project.

DeSanto is one of the panelists at the second annual US-China Summit in Los Angeles this month, sponsored in part by Orb Media Group, which is in talks with Chen, Chicorel and DeSanto to expand the Gods franchise worldwide in various entertainment platforms and merchandising.