China's Ulan Culture Media, Russia's Yellow, Black & White to Adapt Sitcom 'How I Became a Russian'

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It will be the first-ever project of its kind, implemented jointly by the two countries.

In a further example of closer Sino-Russian film collaboration, China’s Ulan Culture Media and Russia’s Yellow, Black & White will adapt the Russian sitcom How I Became a Russian (Kak ya stal russkim).

How I Became a Russian tells the story of an American’s adventures in Russia. The feature is set to go into production in the second half of this year and its release in both countries is expected in 2018, a spokesperson for Yellow, Black & White told The Hollywood Reporter.

A director, who is yet to be determined, will come from Russia, she added.

The movie's budget is tentatively set at $2 million, with both countries investing in equal parts.

As a co-production involving China, How I Became a Russian will be exempt from the Chinese quota requirement for foreign films, becoming the first movie ever with Russian participation to enjoy that status.

China's Tencent Video and Huace Film & TV Group are to be involved in the project as well.

The sitcom How I Became Russian, which cenetred on a U.S. journalist seeking to understand "the mysterious Russian soul," premiered on CTC network in late 2015. It later aired in China.

The project is being launched at a time when Russia and China are stepping up collaboration in film production.

Other projects expected to be implemented jointly by the two countries include a sequel to the 2015 film On – drakon (He Is a Dragon), produced by Timur Bekmambetov's Bazelevs; and Amphibian Man, a remake of the 1960s Soviet classic sci-fi movie, originally conceived as a Russian-European co-production.