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Starry Entertainment Eyes American Talent For A HERO'S JOURNEY TO THE WEST, Big Names For APES
Of all the animated properties one might have expected to see arise in Hollywood, I suppose it was likely that author Wu Cheng'en's Journey To The West novel would still be an option. The longstanding folklore classic has been the bread and butter of many a film and TV show adaption for years with legendary hero, the Monkey King, front and center, and now the newly-established Starry Entertainment is looking to stake its claim with the goal of tapping both into Chinese and global markets.
As THR reports, Ultimate Spider-Man series scribe James Felder is being tapped to write an English-language take on the property with former Disney animator Chris Bradley (Mulan) and Marvel Studio character designer Walter Antonio McDaniel sharing the helm while confirmation of the film's voice cast remains pending for its Chinese New Year release in 2019. The concept comes from Starry Entertainment's own Jon Chiew who serves as acting COO and CEO of Starry's Hong Kong offices. Says Chiew: “The film will be an interpretation of the Journey to the West legend from a Westerner’s point of view, and the writer has found things we have missed,”.
Next to this is in Starry's ambitious slate of varied content is the $12 million dollar production of Asia Pacific Elimination Service (APES), described as an Asian-Expendables type of film about a group of retired action film heroes. Actors Tiger Chen (Man Of Tai Chi) and Tony Jaa (xXx: The Return Of Xander Cage) are being sought to join actor David Wu for the film, although with both tapped to join their ensemble cast in the weeks and months ahead for Jesse V. Johnson's Triple Threat and with Jaa set for a guest role in Yuen Woo-ping’s Max Zhang-led Ip Man 3 spin-off, Cheung Tin-Chi this July, it will take more reporting to see who else, if anyone is cast.
A Hero's Journey To The West is one of several projects in development signaling the continued resourcefulness of the folklore by studios and writers. Aside from Red Sea Media long gestating adaptation of The Monkey King's Daughter, announced back in 2015, actor Eddie Peng leads the current cast of the ambitious new fantasy epic from director Derek Kwok, The Tales Of Wukong this July with Soi Cheang's The Monkey King 3 production still underway for Filmko Entertainment. Tsui Hark's current sequel flick, Journey To The West: The Demons Strike Back, produced by Stephen Chow who helmed the first film, became the highest grossing adaptation among other adaptations upon its China release in January.
Well guys, my hiatus was a brief but fair one. It was a necessary breather to help recoup from the workload and best part about all this is that people are still creating!
So yeah, that's a nice thing to come back to. That's what The Hit List is for and I've found (and have also been sent) some GREAT stuff to share this week. It's also a lot to unpack so without further ado, the stunt reels are up first as always and we begin with Amy Sturdivant's most recent Vimeo upload. I meant to share hers before going on break but YouTube parameters were a factor and Vimeo was the only option left. So, better late than never, and with a demo reel as substantive as this being all the more reason worth sharing.
Following that is a playlist ripe with awesome stunt and action demos by Francis Limoges, Drew Reade, Gaby Rodriguez, Jennifer Badger, Gene Freeman, David Van Tassell, Domenica Rossi, Brytni Lavender, and stunt/fight coordinator reels by Airon Armstrong and Roberto Lopez…
It's understandable that one forgets things. Amid all the film festival hype I damn near forgot that a live-action adaptation of Sakurai Gamon's hit manga, Ajin: Demi Human was on the way which makes me wonder how come it's not heading to festivals this year, unless I'm wrong.
If not, I reckon part of this is due to the amount of work being put into the spectacular action sequences and immersive visuals with Bayside Shakedown film series and Shaolin Girl helmer Motohiro Katsuyuki at the helm. There wasn't a lot of footage in the previous teaser to showcase it much but there was just enough to garner some much-deserved interest and as of Sunday, to say the least, the official trailer guarantees the promise being offered here in a much more assuring fashion.
The film opens in Japan on September 30 and much to the delight of fans of both the manga, the anime series and films, as well as Rurouni Kenshin star Satoh Takeru. He leads the cast of the film as Nagai Kei, a …
Taking a rare pivot from the usual family-friendly tone of a Jackie Chan film, the mood can be both seen and felt in the official teaser trailer for upcoming action thriller, The Foreigner. Casino Royale helmer Martin Campbell is certainly tapping into the dark and gritty millieu here, and it's an appropriate fit for a brooding revenge film that has the honorary Oscar-winning action star leading the cast. The Foreigner takes its cues from Stephen Leather's 1992 novel and with none other than Chan starring as a London restaurant owner who reverts to his former skillset accrued in his dark past when the justice system fails him in an IRA terrorist attack that kills his daughter. Chan stars opposite Pierce Brosnan in their first appearance together on screen with Liu Tao and Katie Leung also starring. The Foreigner will release throughout Asia in September with a U.S. release in tow the following October. Watch the new trailer below!