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Studio 8’s ‘Alpha’ Heads for China Release (EXCLUSIVE)

Alpha,” an action-adventure film from Jeff Robinov’s Chinese-backed Studio 8, has secured a theatrical release in mainland China. It will arrive in Middle Kingdom cinemas Sept. 7.

The film is licensed through Leomus Pictures. Distribution is to be handled by state-owned China Film Group.

An epic adventure set in the last Ice Age, in which a man domesticates a wolf, “Alpha” is directed by Albert Hughes. The story is by Hughes and Sebastian Wiedenhaupt. It stars Kodi Smit-McPhee and Natassia Malthe.

It is only the second feature film to be completed by Studio 8, after 2016’s “Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk,” directed by Ang Lee. Its third, “White Boy Rick,” is set for release later this year.

Set up in 2014 by Robinov, former film head at Warner Bros., Studio 8 is majority-owned by China’s Fosun International group. It also counts Sony Pictures Entertainment as a minority investor and releasing partner.

Sony will release “Alpha” in North America on Friday. The film has international release dates that extend from mid-August to mid-December.

Studio 8 film "Alpha" gets China release

Studio 8 has other connections with China. Before locking in Fosun as an equity investor, the company went a long way down the track towards a finance and investment deal with China’s Huayi Bros. And “Billy Lynn,” for which director Lee used high-frame-rate camerawork that proved a stumbling block for exhibitors, was co-financed with China’s Bona Film Group.

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