Headlines from China: Lupita Nyong’o to Star in John Woo’s Remake of ‘The Killer’

Lupita Nyong’o to Star in John Woo’s Remake of ‘The Killer’

Hong Kong filmmaker John Woo will collaborate with Universal Pictures to remake his 1989 action classic The Killer. Lupita Nyong’o has been cast to play the leading role, which was previously played by actor Chow Yun Fat in the 1989 version. The film is currently in pre-production and will be shot later this year in France and Germany. Lupita Nyong’ o was born in Mexico and spent her childhood in Africa. In 2014, she won an Oscar Award for her supporting role in 12 Years a Slave. Later, she stared in the Star Wars sequel trilogy and Marvel’s superhero film Black Panther. Read more on Mtime

The H Collective to Partner with Hong Kong-based Galaxy Weying

Recently, Hong Kong based film investment firm Galaxy Weying and Hollywood studio The H Collective jointly formed Extreme Pictures, which will specialize in the financing, marketing, and IP development of the xXx franchise in Asia. In addition to working on the upcoming xXx 4, the company will also develop and operate theme parks, studios, and music festivals based on the xXx IP. Galaxy Weying is a joint venture between Beijing Weying Technology and investor Johnny Hsu. Gary Locke, former U.S. Ambassador to China, is an adviser to the company. Read more in yulechanye

Controversy Surrounded ‘Us and Them’ Indicates Ticketing Companies’ Increasing Power Over Cinemas 

Romantic drama ‘Us and Them’ is undoubtedly the biggest winner of this year’s May Day cinematic season in China. Although questions surrounded the film’s presale box office brought  negative coverage, the film continued to top box office charts and raked in 780 million yuan ($123 million) from April 28-30. While it hasn’t been confirmed that ticketing platform Maoyan is the responsible party behind the abnormal number of its ticket refunds, this event has made it obvious that ticketing companies have increasing power over cinemas in China. Six years ago, over 90 percent of moviegoers purchased tickets at cinemas. But today, about 92.5 percent of Chinese moviegoers purchase tickets online, which makes leading ticketing platforms, such as Tao Piaopiao and Maoyan, more and more influential. In addition, with funds from internet giants including Alibaba, Baidu, and Tencent, Tao Piaopiao and Maoyan have been expanding into areas such as film production, marketing, and distribution, which makes them even more powerful in the entertainment industry. As a result, cinemas nowadays have little bargaining power when negotiating business terms with ticketing platforms. Read more on National Business Daily