Cannes: New Chinese Thriller is ‘Born’ to SPI and China’s C2M

SP International and China’s C2M Media Group have agreed to co-produce “Born to Be Ghosts,” a stylized thriller that will be directed by France’s Patrick Alessandrin.

The film, pitched as a “new twist on the ‘Magnificent Seven’ genre,” is budgeted at $35 million. It will shoot predominantly in China in the first quarter of 2016.

A mixed international and Chinese cast is anticipated, and SPI and C2M will jointly control casting. Production is by SPI head Steven Paul and C2M’s Paolo Lee.

C2M will handle Chinese and Asian rights and SPI the rest of the world. North American distribution rights will be handled through SPI’s deal with Sony Pictures. Release is set a year later, in the first quarter of 2017.

The agreement was completed in Cannes and is in addition to the earlier pact to
co-produce $50 million China-U.S. action film “High Speed.”

Alessandrin was assistant director to Luc Besson on the classic “Subway.” He recently directed “District 13: Ultimatum” for Besson’s EuropaCorp.

Paul, who has hits including “Tekken” and “Baby Geniuses,” is currently producing “Ghost in the Shell,” with DreamWorks. C2M Media has co-financed and produced hits including “A Wedding Invitation”; “Girls,” the highest grossing Mainland Chinese film in Taiwan of 2014; and “20 Once Again,” a Chinese-Korean co-production that was a remake of 2014 hit “Miss Granny.”

SPI has also signed output deals with California Films for Latin America and Gulf Films for the Middle East, spanning its slate of upcoming pictures.

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