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AFM: STX Sells ‘All the Money in the World’ to China’s HiShow

STX Intl., the sales arm of budding studio STX Entertainment, has struck a deal that sees HiShow Entertainment set as the exclusive rights holder and China distributor of its Kevin Spacey-starring John Paul Getty kidnap drama “All the Money in the World.”

The Ridley Scott-directed film is set for its premiere this month at the AFI Festival and is set for North American release on Dec. 22. Sony Pictures is handling the North American release. STX, present at this week’s American Film Market, is overseeing international.

International openings will largely follow the domestic outing, and, as is normal with the release of foreign titles in China, no date has yet been set. Neither STX or HiShow were able to confirm if the  pictures has yet cleared censorship in China, or whether it will be treated as a revenue-sharing film or a flat-fee import.

Spacey has been accused of sexual misconduct by “Star Trek” actor Anthony Rapp, dating back to an incident in 1986. Spacey has apologized, but in the post-Weinstein era, reports of the incident have nevertheless caused a social media storm. The business fallout of that controversy has included Netflix cancelling further episodes of Spacey-starring “House of Cards.” But Sony has no current plans to change its release of “Money.”

“All the Money” follows the kidnapping of 16-year-old John Paul Getty III (Charlie Plummer) and the desperate attempt by his devoted mother Gail (Michelle Williams) to convince his billionaire grandfather (Spacey) to pay the ransom. When the elder Getty refuses, Gail attempts to sway him as her son’s captors become increasingly volatile and brutal.  With her son’s life in the balance, Gail and Getty’s advisor (Mark Wahlberg) become unlikely allies in a race against time.”

Founded in 2014, HiShow has diversified into film and TV production, investment, distribution and marketing in China. Earlier this year it paid some $10 million for Chinese rights and investment positions in two Nu Image/Millennium Films: “Hunter Killer” and “Escobar.” Earlier this year it released “Ballerina” in China. Previously, HiShow was involved with “The Imitation Game” starring Benedict Cumberbatch, and 2015’s Franco-Chinese drama “Night Peacock” (“Le Paon de Nuit”), directed by Dai Sijie and produced by HiShow’s Wang Haiyi.

STX, which has significant investment from China and Hong Kong including Hony Capital, Tencent and PCCW, has revealed plans to list its shares at an appropriate time on the Hong Kong stock market. It recently enjoyed success in China with $80 million grossed by Jackie Chan-Pierce Brosnan actioner “The Foreigner.”

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