It seems that if a retelling of Pocahontas with a hoard of 10-foot tall blue extraterrestrial beings is enough to spawn masses of people trying to “avatar-me” (not to mention nine Oscar nominations), then surely a 3D Monkey King epic is bound to be truly mind-blowing. You heard me, Monkey King in all his furry detail is coming to a fake DVD cart near you soon.
Directed by Cheang Pou-Soi, the 400 million yuan production is said to have cast a handful of industry big shots such as Chow Yun-Fat, Aaron Kwok, Faye Wong, Cecilia Cheung and Donnie Yen, the latter as the furry fellow himself.
The production cost is to be split 65% and 35% between production companies Filmko and Mandarin Films, making it the second most expensive Asian cinematic project since John Woo’s Red Cliff in 2008 (It appears that pouring money into a project, hoping it will equal quality, has been a popular trait recently). Hiring companies from Hollywood to handle the special effects, the filming has already begun in Beijing, with the entire cast expected to commence in mid-November.
We’re not sure if watching hairy Donnie Yen sporting two phoenix feathers on his head in 3D or IMAX format is the best way to watch a retelling of one of the greatest Chinese novels ever written, but you never know, we could all be downloading a monkey-me application in just over a year.