After China opened its doors to the world in 1980, Chinese entrepreneurs conquered one global manufacturing industry after another except one. In 2009, The Chosun IIbo said there are 875,000 millionaires in China including 55,000 with more than 100 million yuan and almost 2 thousand billionaires. One of those billionaires wants to conquer that last frontier.
The NY Times reported that one of China’s richest men, Jon Jiang, wants to equal tinsel town by producing a movie that has ancient Greek warriors, pirates, underwater kingdoms and more by using mostly American actors and 3/D technology. The big difference is “Empires of the Deep” is being produced in a studio near Beijing.
Jiang is not the only wealthy capitalist in China who wants to build a Chinese Hollywood. I’ve written about Zhang Zhao heading Enlight Pictures and another production company run by the Huayi brothers, who have collaborated with Sony and Disney. Source: Hollywood to Bollywood to a Rising Chinawood
For one example, there was the Karate Kid (2010) with Jackie Chan and Jaden Smith that was co-produced between an American Studio and China and was filmed in and around Beijing. To date, this film has earned close to $359.1 million globally.
Catching up on the news about Jiang’s film, there was this report recently from Twitch Film.com: “Three Years and a hundred-and-thirty million dollars later, all we get is Ogla Kurylenko with a shell on her head.”
I didn’t think the trailer was that bad [watch embedded video]. Currently the producers of Empires of the Deep are seeking worldwide distribution. A release date in China is scheduled for 2014. If this film doesn’t make it into local theaters outside China, eventually it may be available on DVD.
Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.
His latest novel is the multiple-award winning Running with the Enemy.
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Empires of the Deep isn’t my kind of movie.
I might see it. I’m a sucker for science fiction and fantasy films. Although I don’t read science fiction and fantasy like I did as a teen and in my twenties, I still go to the films. Stargate; Lord of the Rings; The Hobbit, Star War; etc. I love this stuff. I also love artsy films and I don’t miss any of Woody Allen’s films. Heck, I’m into all kinds of film and books. I’m not stuck in one genre. My tastes are all over the place.
But I don’t think this move will make it into the theaters in the US. At best, it will probably go to DVD. I think this Chinese billionaire just lost a lot of money.