‘CSI’s’ Kao takes ‘Secret’ route

Actor will join Hugh Jackman in Wang film

Archie Kao will join Hugh Jackman, Korean Jeon Ji-Hyunand and Chinese thesp Li Bingbing in helmer Wayne Wang’s “Snow Flower and the Secret Fan.”

Kao, best known for roles in TV’s “CSI” and Quentin Lee’s “The People I’ve Slept With,” has signed on as male lead in Wang’s adaptation of Lisa See’s New York Times bestselling novel of the same name.

Pic began lensing at Hengdian film studio in Zhejiang province the first week of February with Li and Gianna Jun. Zhang Ziyi was originally due to star in the pic and serve as co-producer, but the mainland actress ankled last month.

Wang is best-known for “Smoke” and “Blue in the Face,” in which he collaborated with novelist Paul Auster.

Pic is about love between two women and the rigid codes that govern their friendship in 19th century China, is being co-produced by Wendi Murdoch, wife of News Corp. chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch, and Florence Sloan, a Malaysian-Chinese married to MGM chairman Harry Sloan.

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