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Martial Arts Epic 'The Grandmasters' Generating Heat in Berlin (Exclusive)


BERLIN -- One of the films to watch in Berlin is The Grandmasters, Hong Kong auteur Wong Kar-wai's sumptuous telling of the tale of martial arts legend Ip Man.

The story has previously been told in films like Ip Man and Ip Man 2, but Wong, director of Chungking Express and My Blueberry Nights, is generating buzz because the project is his first action movie.

Wong took a break from filming to trek to Berlin, privately showing buyers footage from his epic.

Among those showing strong interest, according to insiders, were execs from Weinstein Co., Fox Searchlight and Sony Pictures Classics. Focus Features is likely in the mix as well.

Wild Bunch is selling international while CAA handles domestic.

The $25 million Chinese-language film might seem to be a tough sell in the U.S., for the mere fact that it isn't in English. Then again, that didn't stop Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon from crossing over from art house fare to becoming a major North American box office hit as well as a multiple Oscar winner.

Grandmasters stars Tony Leung, Zhang Ziyi and Chang Chen. Action sequences were choreographed by Yeun Woo-ping.