Yu, Tee unveil new H.K. shingle

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Hong Kong soon will have a new film development and production company founded by Daniel Yu, departing chief operating officer at pop idol Andy Lau's Focus Films, Yu's partner in the new venture has confirmed.

Yu and partner Lorna Tee, former Focus marketing and distribution manager, were instrumental in launching Focus' First Cuts series, which helps new filmmakers get released across Southeast Asia.

Yu and Tee's work at Focus helped establish Malaysian director Ho Yuhang ("Rain Dogs") and Chinese director Ning Hao, whose "Crazy Stone," a black comedy made for 3 million yuan ($385,000), grossed more than 23 million yuan ($2.94 million) at the mainland boxoffice.

Tee said that she and Yu have found partners for their new company and have hired a staff but declined to give further details.

"We expect to make a full announcement at the upcoming Berlin film festival," Tee said.

Tee said she and Yu will likely continue working on the next Focus: First Cuts projects as well as "Armful," the upcoming drama by Thai director Wisit Sasanatieng.

At Focus, Simon Li, previously company director, will now head the company with support from marketing executive Sharon Cheng.

The 3-year-old company is expected to release the latest edition of Focus: First Cuts early this year and expects to produce and release two more films in the second half of the year, Cheng said. Cheng also said that staff have been hired to replace the departing duo, but declined to elaborate.
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