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Cannes: IM Global Picks Up Chinese Crowd-Pleasers ‘Youth,’ ‘Detective Dee’

Variety logo Variety 5/9/2017 Patrick Frater
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IM Global has picked up international sales rights to upcoming Chinese film “Youth” by Feng Xiaogang and “Detective Dee: The Four Heavenly Kings” from leading studio Huayi Brothers. Feng is China’s most consistently commercial director, while the Tsui Hark-directed “Detective Dee” is one of China’s biggest movie franchises.

Now in post-production, “Youth” chronicles the lives of a group of idealistic adolescents who take part in an army art troupe and learn about love and the growing pains of entering adulthood. The screenplay was written by Yan Geling, who previously penned “The Flowers of War” and the Chinese adaptation of “Dangerous Liaisons.” “Youth” stars Huang Xuan, Miao Miao, and Zhong Chuxi.

The third film in the “Detective Dee” series, “Four Heavenly Kings” sees Dee defend himself against the accusations of Empress Wu while investigating a crime wave. The film, now in pre-production, will see the return of Mark Zhao (“Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon”) and Carina Lau (“Detective Dee and the Mystery of the Phantom Flame”) alongside Kenny Lin (“Journey to the West: Demon Chapter,” “The Great Wall”) and Feng Shaofeng (“The Monkey King 2,” “Wolf Totem”). Production is by Chen Kuo-fu and Nansun Shi.

IM Global has an exclusive output deal with Huayi Brothers. IM Global’s Anthem division has previously handled sales for “Mojin: The Lost Legend,” “Mr. Six,” and Zhang Ziyi-starring “The Wasted Times.” IM Global will launch sales on both new titles at the upcoming Cannes market.

The deal was negotiated by Leslie Chen, IM Global’s SVP, sales and acquisitions Asia.

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