US producers need more time to figure out China’s co-production rules, but opportunities remain, was the major message at the US-China Film Summit held at UCLA on Tuesday (Oct 30).
“We need more communication and understanding to get to know each other, but there will be more opportunities for co-productions targeting the international audience,” said William Feng, general manager of the Motion Picture Association’s China office.
Sino-US co-productions have recently come under scrutiny by Chinese authorities, with the result that several films which were aiming for co-production status, such as Expendables 2, Looper and Cloud Atlas, are being released in China as imports instead.
However, Leon Gao, president of market research firm EntGroup, said that 13 co-productions are expected next year. In a video message, China Film Co-production Corp president Zhang Xun told US producers to ignore the negative rumours about Sino-foreign co-production that are circulating in the industry and press.
On a separate panel, leading Chinese investors including China Mainstream Media, Le Vision Pictures and Galloping Horse outlined their interest in international co-productions and investing in US films.
Wang Lifeng, partner in $160m film fund, Wuxi Jinyu Investment Management, said the fund would like to invest in international co-productions to attract them to the Wuxi Studios facility in Jiangsu province.
Huace Media’s Zhao Yifang talked about the new “International Film and Television Industrial Zone” which is being established as a joint venture between Huace and local government near Hangzhou in Zhejiang province. “We believe this could become an effective platform for Sino-US co-operation,” said Zhao.