Filmart: Serenity Media Group Pacts With Korea's MBC on 'Journey to Rainbow Island' (Exclusive)
Christie Hsiao and MBC see the Korean deal as part of a process of selling content into Asia.
Serenity Media Group's Christie Hsiao has signed a partnership with South Korea's MBC (Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation) network to make a TV series and stage musical of her novel Journey to Rainbow Island.
Hsiao believes the Korean deal will be a stepping stone to further sales in Asia.
The deal involves the production of a children's musical TV series, as well as the translation of the English version of the novel into Korean. The Korean-language book will come out in October 2015, followed by a stage musical in the first half of 2016.
"I have always envisioned Journey to Rainbow Island as an international project that can reach audiences all over the world," Hsiao told The Hollywood Reporter. "My plan is to develop digital gaming and merchandise based on Journey, as well as the film. With the launch of Journey in Korea, it is my belief that it will generate success throughout Asia."
MBC said it was in talks with major Chinese film companies and distribution on co-production for the film based on Journey to Rainbow Island.
A spokesperson for MBC said the company was particularly attracted by the prospect of using the IP for Journey to Rainbow Island to build a theme park.
The follow-up book will see the main female character in the book, Yu-ning, travel to Korea and China.
"Certainly this will work for Korean and Chinese audiences," said MBC's spokesperson. "Success in the Korean market is very important because Korea is the leading country in the field of cultural industry in [the] Asia region, so culture trends and fashion flow from Korea toward other Asian countries."
MBC is considering using its links to Hebei TV in China to develop the project there. Journey to Rainbow Island fits well with China's need for "positive, education and inspiring content, with international appeal," the MBC rep explained.
"Our main focus is Journey to Rainbow Island as a global project, not only the book, but we are also interested in other derivate works," MBC's spokesperson added.