Filmart Hot List: 8 Titles Not to Miss in Hong Kong
From star-driven crime dramas like Andy Lau's 'Drug Lords' to the latest in the blockbuster 'Ip Man' franchise, genre fare with wide commercial appeal will draw strong interest at Asia's biggest film market.
Assassins and the Missing Gold
Veteran producer Jeffrey Lau (Kung Fu Hustle, ChungKing Express) takes directing duties on this period suspense actioner from Hong Kong-based Entertaining Power. The film features Max Zhang (Ip Man 3) and his real-life wife Ada Choi as an estranged couple who reunites to expose a conspiracy, foil an assassination and search for a fortune.
Drug Lords, Universe Entertainment's sequel to the 2013 crime thriller The White Storm, which took in $45 million at the international office, sees Hong Kong megastar Andy Lau joining Louis Koo and prolific helmer Herman Yau (Shock Wave) taking over directing duties from Benny Chan. Slated for release at the beginning of 2019, the US$25 million film tells four intertwining stories examining the Asian drug trade from multiple perspectives.
The threequel to action adventures Tokyo Raiders (2000) and Seoul Raiders (2005), Mei Ah's Europe Raiders sees celebrated lead Tony Leung Chiu-wai returning but playing the new role of a CIA special agent (he was an agent of the Japanese National Security Council in previous installments). Shot on location all around Europe, the $45 million film is once again helmed by series director Jingo Ma and produced by longtime Wong Kai Wai collaborator Jacky Pang (The Grandmaster).
Adapted from popular Hong Kong play Murder in San Jose by award-winning scribe Philip Yung (Port of Call), Emperor's Fatal Visit uncovers the horrifying truth behind a seemingly perfect marriage by a woman who visits her friends in the U.S. Singer-actress Sammi Cheng (Blind Detective) leads the cast, alongside Charlene Choi (77 Heartbreaks) and Tong Dawei (Dearest), with Calvin Poon (Kiss Me Goodbye) as director.
The inaugural film out of Emperor's multi-pic deal with Alan Mak and Felix Chong, the duo behind Infernal Affairs, this anti-corruption drama will star Sean Lau (Overheard series), Nick Cheung (Unbeatable) and Karena Lam (Zinnia Flower). Now in preproduction, the filmmakers intend to shoot on location in Australia beginning in May for what is the first installment in a planned trilogy.
Master Z: The Ip Man Legacy
Spun off from the Ip Man franchise, Mandarin Motion Pictures' $28 million Master Z has international star power galore, with Guardians of the Galaxy's Dave Bautista joining Thai mega action star Tony Jaa, The Grandmaster and Pacific Rim Uprising's Max Zhang and Michelle Yeoh (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon). Produced by Raymond Wong and helmed by master martial arts choreographer and director Yuen Woo-ping, the film is centered around Cheung Tin-chi, who was beaten by Ip Man in the third installment of the franchise.
Men on the Dragon (working title)
One Cool Pictures' sports comedy revolves around four middle-age telecom workers joining the crew of their company's racing boat for the traditional Chinese holiday, the Dragon Boat Festival, to avoid being laid off. The directorial debut of Sunny Chan, Men on the Dragon stars Francis Ng (The Mission), theater actor Poon Chan-leung, Kenny Wong (Cold War 2) and Tony Wu (Weeds on Fire).
When Robbers Meet the Monster
The star of Media Asia's period fantasy comedy by Infernal Affairs helmer Andrew Lau is undoubtedly the titular CGI monster, created by Hong Kong effects house Menfond (CJ7). Now in postproduction, this Robin Hood-like tale of bandits robbing a corrupt official who took from the people also features Louis Koo and Zhou Dong-Yu (Soul Mate) and uses its story set in the Ming dynasty to satirize the present.