China’s LeVision Buys Lionsgate’s ‘Gods of Egypt,’ Unveils 10-Picture Slate

Le Vision Pictures, the studio group built around one of China’s most aggressive streaming video platforms, has acquired Chinese rights to Alex Proyas’ “Gods of Egypt” from Lionsgate–Summit.

The $140 million “Gods” is a fantasy actioner about a young thief who enlists the help of the ancient gods to bring his beloved back to life. The cast is headed by Gerald Butler,Nicolaj Coster-Waldau, Geoffrey Rush and Brenton Thwaites.

Le Vision also unveiled a 10 film production and distribution slate, which CEO Zhang Zhao said was the result of more than two years of development hell.

“We first opened an office here two and a half years ago. And for that time we did not do any deals, just development. “Bringing the results of this development – Chinese stories, tentpole, English-language movies – today,” said Le Vision Pictures CEO Zhang Zhao. Titles include “King of Kings,” “Turandot,” and “Peony Pavilion.”

The pickup and the slate news follow a string of other recent deal announcements by the company as it makes a strong play to be involved in Hollywood and the film industry beyond China.

In the past few days the company has announced a partnership with Dark Horse Comics to adapt and develop a slate of six graphic novels; a two-film deal with “Lion King” director Rob Minkoff, and an agreement with producer Bernie Goldmann to make action thriller “Zodiac: Year of the Snake.” It has also confirmed that it will be selling its hardware — smart phones, TVs and 4K streaming devices — in the U.S.

The pacts were unveiled ahead of a glitzy function at the Sofitel Hotel in Beverly Hills, Monday (Nov. 9), were invited guests included Lionsgate’s Brian Goldsmith and Wendy Reeds, Legendary Pictures’ Thomas Tull, Legendary East’s Peter Loehr, former Los Angeles mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, Fox’s Tomas Jegeus, Minkoff and business partner Pietro Ventani, Village Roadshow Pictures Asia’s Ellen Eliasoph, Dark Horse Comics SVP Keith Goldberg, Michael Andreen, and Michael Uslan.

A guest of honor was Zhang Yimou, the prominent Chinese director who is artistic advisor to Le Vision in China. He is currently in post-production on English-language, Chinese-themed action adventure film “The Great Wall,” with Universal, Legendary East and Le Vision producing. Zhang Yimou described the film as “potentially a turning point, one that brings Chinese film to the world… and one that lays the foundations for younger generations.”

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