With Hollywood increasingly headed to China, here’s a twist: A Chinese TV series is about to set up shop in the Pacific Northwest. DMG Entertainment, the company that partnered with Marvel on Iron Man 3 in China, will team with Washington FilmWorks to develop, produce and shoot a Chinese-language TV drama in Seattle. The series is eyeing an early 2014 production start. It’s untitled for the moment, but will follow the lives and loves of a group of Chinese nationals as they deal with modern American life. China’s leading broadcaster CCTV will air the show. DMG chief Dan Mintz noted that “The Seattle area boasts a highly diverse cultural make-up and that includes a lot of Chinese and Asian communities, which makes it a perfect place to set the show.” Washington governor Jay Inslee added, “China represents a major trading partner for a wide range of Washington State industries; the agreements signed today with Chinese film and technology companies, like DMG, will be the foundation of our shared economic success.” Washington FilmWorks is a non-profit that manages the Washington state film incentive programs.
DMG Entertainment, the Beijing-based company that teamed with Disney/Marvel on Iron Man 3, is partnering with Alcon Entertainment to finance, produce, and distribute a series of films beginning with Johnny Depp-starrer Transcendence. The sci-fi pic that marks Wally Pfister’s directorial debut began shooting last month and has set an April 2014 release. Morgan Freeman, Paul Bettany, Rebecca Hall and Kate Mara also star. DMG and Alcon will also pair on the Ericson Core-helmed remake of Kathryn Bigelow’s 1991 surfing/crime thriller Point Break. Shooting starts at the end of 2013 with the action transferred to the world of international extreme sports. Under the partnership, DMG will distribute both pictures in China. Warner Bros. has North America.
The Transcendence team has done a solid job keeping a tight lid on the plot of Jack Paglen’s script, but DMG provided some details today in Beijing. The story is set in the world of artificial intelligence science and, according to CEO Dan Mintz, “is about that moment when human consciousness and the insanely fast rise of computing power collide.”
Mintz also said, “We are very excited that these will be the first two films of what will be a long-lasting and very successful partnership with Alcon. We look forward to making history with our new partner.”