Universe Films Distribution has picked up international rights to the next film from Hong Kong director Ann Hui, Jade Goddess (working title), which is currently shooting in the southwestern Chinese province of Yunnan.

The cast is headed by rising mainland actress Vicky Zhao, Hong Kong star Nicholas Tse and mainland actor Liu Ye who also stars in competition title Purple Butterfly. The story revolves a widowed policewoman who has an affair with a drug dealer while grieving for her husband.

The film is produced and financed by three mainland companies - China Film Group Corporation, Century Hero Film Investment Co and Cheng Cheng Group. Two-year-old Century Hero is headed by former Beijing Film Studio chief Han San Ping and boasts Fifth Generation directors Tian Zhuangzhuang as head of production and Chen Kaige as art director.

Hui's recent credits include award-winning drama July Rhapsody, which screened at last year's Berlin Film Festival, and horror title Visible Secret.

Universe is also selling action title Heroic Duo (formerly called The Eyes Can Tell) which is currently shooting in Hong Kong with Benny Chan (Big Bullet, Gen-X Cops) directing and Leon Lai, Ekin Cheng and Karena Lam heading the cast.