U.K.’s Optimum nabs ‘Seediq Bale’

Taiwanese pic world preems in Venice competish

Taiwanese epic “Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq bale” has been acquired for U.K. distribution by Optimum Releasing.

The $25 million film, directed by Wei Te-sheng, will world premiere in competition at the 68th Venice Film Festival. The U.K. deal is the first European sale for the pic, previously known as “Seediq bale.”

Set in 1930s Formosa — now Taiwan — it’s based on the true story of the Wushe Incident, in which the aboriginal Seediq tribe, armed only with ancient guns and spears, rebelled against the Japanese occupation.

Produced by John Woo, Terence Chang and Jimmy Huang, the film has been in preparation for 10 years, and features a cast of 15,000 and a crew of 400 from Taiwan, Japan and South Korea.

It is co-produced by Wei and Huang’s ARS Film Prods. with Taiwanese studio Central Motion Picture Corp.

Wei previously directed “Cape No. 7,” the highest grossing Taiwanese film ever.

Fortissimo Films is handling international sales. Fortissimo’s Nicole Mackey negotiated the U.K. deal with Optimum’s head of acquisitions Alison Meese and StudioCanal’s acquisitions consultant Berenice Fugard.

Popular on Variety

More Film

  • First still from the set of

    Composer Michael Giacchino on Setting the Right Tone for 'Jojo Rabbit'

    Michael Giacchino is a widely respected film composer, with an Oscar and a Grammy for “Up” and an Emmy for “Lost,” as well as a Grammy for “Ratatouille.” He is stirring up Oscar buzz again with his score for Fox Searchlight’s “Jojo Rabbit,” written and directed by Taika Waititi. Giacchino talked with Variety about the [...]

  • Michael Giacchino Film Composer

    How the 'Jojo Rabbit' Production Team Created a Child's View of Nazi Germany

    When picturing Nazi Germany during World War II, most people think of black-and-white or sepia-toned images of drab cities. For the cinematographer and production designer of “Jojo Rabbit,” a film set squarely in that time and place, it became clear that the color palette of the era was far more varied than they could have [...]

  • Robert Duvall (Oberst Kilgore)

    Studiocanal Steps Up its Heritage Game in Germay Via Arthaus Classics

    LYON, France – Continuing its devotion to heritage film in Germany, Studiocanal is bringing classic movies back into cinemas while also releasing newly restored DVD/Blu-ray collections of beloved titles. The leading producer-distributor enjoyed a major hit this summer with the one-day re-release of Francis Ford Coppola’s “Apocalypse Now: Final Cut,” which scored 12,000 admissions in [...]

  • Dewanda Wise Captain Marvel

    'Jurassic World 3' Casts DeWanda Wise in Leading Role (EXCLUSIVE)

    DeWanda Wise, best known for her breakout role in Netflix’s “She’s Gotta Have It,” has landed a leading role in the third installment of Universal Pictures and Amblin Entertainment’s “Jurassic World” saga. She joins Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard, who will reprise their roles from the previous films, as well as Sam Neill, Laura [...]

  • awkwafina-taron-egerton-split

    Awkwafina, Taron Egerton Get Santa Barbara Fest Salute

    The 35th Santa Barbara Intl. Film Festival will honor Awkwafina, Taron Egerton, Florence Pugh and Taylor Russell with Virtuoso Awards on Saturday, Jan. 18. The quartet mark the first wave of recipients of honorees at the festival. The four actors are being saluted for their 2019 work, including “The Farewell,” “Rocketman,” “Midsommar,” and “Waves,” respectively. The festival [...]

  • NEZHA Chinese Movie

    Animation Is Film Festival Spotlights Some of China's Top Toons

    Over the summer, “Ne Zha,” the first 3D Chinese-produced animated feature released in Imax theaters, did something no one expected. It has grossed $700 million and instantly signaled the arrival of Chinese animation as an international creative force. The blockbuster is part of the lineup of the Animation Is Film Festival, which runs Oct. 18-20 [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content