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Veteran Hollywood animator Tony Bancroft, director of Disney’s Mulan and the recently released Animal Crackers, has signed to direct the Chinese animated musical Songhua.
The announcement was made during a signing ceremony on day two of the Shanghai International Film Festival.
The film, written by Joe Bockol (Akuma), will be co-produced by Astro-Nomical Entertainment in association with Pelagius Entertainment.
Inspired by the famed Harbin ice festival in northern China, Songhua is based on themes from Chinese folklore, the producers say. The film is set in ancient China, in a mythical world of ice, and the story follows a quick-witted spirit who helps a young princess and an underdog hero fulfill their destinies and save their homeland.
The project has been budgeted at $35 million. The producers say they aspire for the film to appeal to families in both China and around the world.
The film is produced by Jay Ahn, Chris Henderson and Joe Fries, with Pelagius Entertainment’s Natalie Khoury serving as executive producer.
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