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Avi Arad, Seven Stars team on superheroes

Partnership will encompass live-action films inspired by Chinese mythology

Avi Arad and Bruno Wu’s Seven Stars Entertainment are forming a joint venture to develop superhero franchise properties inspired by Chinese history and mythology.

Arad, who will take part via Arad Prods., has been involved with the “Spider-Man,” “X-Men” and “Iron Man” franchises as well as “The Incredible Hulk.”

Partnership will encompass live-action tentpole features and animated television series and grow into merchandising, various digital platforms, and mobile applications.

The first project under the alliance is “Rise of the Terracotta Warriors,” based on an original story idea by Arad and inspired by the history and mythology behind China’s Terracotta Army sculptures — created to protect China’s first emperor in his afterlife.

“Avi is a copious producer of fantasy, superheroes and sci-fi as well as one of the world’s top toy designers,” Wu said. “I think it’s important to provide the next generation with role models, and Avi is the ideal partner to bring this Chinese myth to life in a multimedia environment, including a major Chinese-U.S. co-production tentpole movie.”

Arad said, “Bruno and I share an affinity for Chinese history and culture, and his knowledge will help guide me through this fascinating world of Chinese mythology.”

Wu and Arad will serve as producers on the projects, and Alexandra Bland from Arad Prods. will exec produce. The deal was negotiated by Fred Milstein, CEO of Seven Stars.

Seven Stars is partnered with Justin Lin’s Perfect Storm Entertainment, which recently announced the sci-fi thriller “Hibernation.” Seven Stars is also developing “Mission Boys,” written by Erin Cressida Wilson, and “The Last Empress,” to star Gong Li.

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