Fortissimo Films to handle worldwide rights

CANNES — John Woo will direct “1949” as soon as he has finished his epic “Red Cliff.”

Romancer “1949” is a $40 million Chinese-language epic to be produced by Woo and Terence Chang’s Lion Rock, with Fortissimo Films handling worldwide rights outside China.

Based on true events at the end of WWII and the final years of the Chinese Civil War, pic will star Chang Chen and Korea’s Song Hye-kyo. Wang Hui-ling (“Lust, Caution”) penned the screenplay.

Lensing will begin in December in China and Taiwan, with the theatrical release skedded for December 2009 and the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China.

Coin comes from investors including Ling I-Jun and China Film Group.

The project aims to portray “the realities of the history of the Chinese people and nation,” Fortissimo co-chief Michael J. Werner said.

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