Chinese Studios Option Canadian Comedies at Whistler For Co-Productions

"Finding Mr. Right" producer Mathew Tang will develop the romantic comedy "The Shanghai Hotel" from writer/producers Eric Johnson and Adria Budd Johnson.

WHISTLER, B.C. - Mathew Tang has good reason to like romantic comedies.

The Hong Kong producer with EDKO Film had a breakout hit earlier this year with Xue Xiaolu’s Finding Mr. Right, the Seattle-set comedy shot mostly in Vancouver with a Chinese cast for $5 million, before earning $83 million at the box office in China.

On Thursday, Tang was at the Whistler Film Festival to option for development another Canadian romantic comedy tailored for the Chinese market, The Shanghai Hotel, written and produced by Eric Johnson and Adria Budd Johnson.

Also optioned as part of the second China Canada Gateway for film script competition at the west coast festival was Zamboni, written by Brian Dick and Tricia Finn.

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The coming-of-age dramedy, produced by J.P. Finn and Sacha McLean, will be developed in partnership with Xian Film and TV Production Co., led by H.E. Fangqiu.

And Zhao Zhiping of Beijing Guoyingshengshi Culture Communication optioned the Canadian comedy Little Big Fish, written by Simone Stock and Shawn Tanaka, and produced by Misha Skoric.

Finding Mr. Right was co-produced by Vancouver-based Holiday Pictures.

So Tang and fellow Hong Kong and Chinese producers will be on hand at Whistler through the weekend holding meetings with prospective Canadian partners on possible co-productions.

The expected budget for all three optioned projects will be $5 million.

The China Canada gateway match-making competition has backing from Telefilm Canada, the Canadian government's film financier.

The Whistler Film Festival continues through Sunday.