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Luc Besson’s EuropaCorp Expands Deal With China’s Fundamental

Shanghai-based Fundamental Films has agreed to a five-year extension to its distribution output deal with Luc Besson’s EuropaCorp. It will also take on co-production duties on a slate of upcoming titles including the Besson-directed “Valerian.”

Fundamental, headed by Mark Gao, said that it will invest up to $50 million in “Valerian,” an adaptation of a graphic novel, which begin shooting in December with Dane DeHaan and Cara Delevingne starring. “The company will co-finance Besson’s ambitious project and handle Chinese distribution, while owning a substantial part of international box office growth,” Gao said.

Other French-Chinese co-productions to be developed and distributed under the deal include a revival of “Transporter,” and the imminent “Warrior’s Gate,” which will be directed by Matthias Hoene and star Dave Bautista (“The Guardians of the Galaxy”).

The two companies previously had a three-year agreement, which has seen Fundamental oversee the China distribution of “Brick Mansions,” “Lucy” and “Taken 3.” The new deal sees Fundamental expand its role to financing, funding and the co-production of international projects.

Fundamental has a structured equity fund that fully finances the development and production of its own slate of international films. In addition to the renewed EuropaCorp pact, Fundamental boasts strategic production and development deals with Basil Iwanyk’s Thunder Road, Keanu Reeves’ Company Films and Mark Johnson’s Gran Via. It has over 25 projects currently in active development.

“We are proud of our ongoing partnership with EuropaCorp, and the successes achieved to date. With several co-productions in development and a number of first-rate films soon to reach enthusiastic Chinese and worldwide audiences, we can look forward to a hugely exciting next five years,” said Gao, chairman of Fundamental Films in a statement.

“Fundamental Film’s vast experience and expertise within the Chinese market has ensured our films continue to land in the territory with a real bang,” said EuropaCorp CEO Christophe Lambert.

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