Kevin Spacey in Chinese film

Actor to star in Mandarin/English-language pic

Kevin Spacey will scale the Great Wall of Chinese film production.

The multihyphenate has signed on to star in director Dayyan Eng’s black comedy “Inseparable.” Spacey’s involvement makes him the highest-profile Hollywood actor to ever star in a Chinese production.

The film, which will be shot in Mandarin and English, centers on a young man (Daniel Wu) with problems at home and work who is befriended by a mysterious American expat (Spacey). Beibi Gong also stars as the investigative-reporter wife of Wu’s character.

Eng, a Beijing-based U.S. national, penned the script and is producing through his Colordance Pictures banner. Lensing will begin in southern China this month. Move reflects Spacey’s aim to be ahead of the curve and recognize the rapidly growing impact of the Chinese film market.

Fantawild Pictures is the majority financier on the project, which is being produced by David U. Lee of Xinhua Media Ent.

While other films have been co-financed in China starring U.S. actors including Ed Norton, Willem Dafoe and Donald Sutherland, this is the first time there has been a wholly financed local Chinese film production starring an actor of Spacey’s visibility.

Spacey and Dana Brunetti are exec producing via their Trigger Street Prods. banner. Fantawild’s Li Ming and QED Intl.’s Bill Block will also serve as exec producers alongside Steven Squillante.Spacey’s upcoming projects include “Casino Jack,” in which he plays disgraced Washington power broker Jack Abramoff, and the comedy “Father of Invention.” He is also the artistic director of the Old Vic Theatre in London.

Trigger Street’s slate includes a pair of Sony pics: the untitled Somali pirate project and David Fincher’s “The Social Network.”

Spacey and Trigger Street are repped by CAA and Joanne Horowitz Management.

“Inseparable” marks Eng’s second feature film. His first, “Waiting Alone,” was a cult hit in China.

(Clifford Coonan in Beijing contributed to this report.)

More Biz

  • EFM 1st European Film Politics Seminar

    Berlin: 1st European Film Politics Seminar - Protecting Independent Film Production

    Leading industry reps gathered on the opening day of Berlin’s European Film Market for what is certain to be a continuing discussion about leveling the playing field for independent producers across Europe and demanding greater engagement in the sector from global players. The 1st European Film Politics Seminar aims to set the political agenda of [...]

  • Harvey Weinstein (C) arrives to New

    Harvey Weinstein Jury Note Stirs Frenzied Speculation on Verdict

    A note from the jury in the Harvey Weinstein trial on Friday afternoon set the media and legal worlds abuzz with speculation about the verdict. The note suggested that the jurors were deadlocked on the two most serious charges — predatory sexual assault — but had reached a unanimous consensus on three other counts, of [...]

  • Naim McNair Named Def Jam Senior

    Naim McNair Named Def Jam Senior VP of A&R

    In what may be the first signal of the next era of Def Jam Recordings, Naim McNair has been named senior VP of A&R at the company. The move comes just hours after it was confirmed that Paul Rosenberg, chairman and CEO of the label since January of 2018, is leaving his post at the [...]

  • Paul Rosenberg

    Paul Rosenberg Stepping Down as Head of Def Jam

    UPDATED: Paul Rosenberg, chairman and CEO of Def Jam Recordings since January of 2018, is leaving his post at the company, a source close to the situation confirms to Variety. Jeff Harleston, general counsel for Def Jam parent company Universal Music Group, will serve as interim chief until a new CEO is appointed; he will [...]

  • Baby Yoda - The Child Animatronic

    Hasbro's Adorable Baby Yoda Animatronic Toy Is Already Sold Out on Disney's Online Store

    The Force remains strong for toys based on Baby Yoda, the breakout star of Disney Plus original series “The Mandalorian.” Less than a day after becoming available for pre-order, Hasbro’s new $59.99 Baby Yoda animatronic toy is no longer available on Disney’s official online store: As of Friday morning, Shop Disney listed it as “sold [...]

  • BTS Leads Spotify’s New Music Friday

    BTS Leads Spotify’s New Music Friday Playlist Rebrand

    Spotify has launched a global rebrand of its popular New Music Friday playlist, which this week features BTS, The Weeknd, Noah Cyrus, Trippie Redd, Kenny Chesney, Rei Ami and others. The revamped playlist, which has 43 versions worldwide, has more than 3.5 million followers in the US and eight million globally. New elements include a [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content