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AFM: China’s HGC Unveils Trio of Animation Titles

China’s HGC Entertainment Group is launching a trio of completed Chinese animation movies at this week’s American Film Market. It will also handle Asian sales of Norwegian adventure film “Amundsen.”

“The Wind Guardians” is the story of a blind boy whose mother makes a dreadful trade with a monster in order to restore her son’s sight. He has to understand and break the spell that has transformed her. Directed by Liu Kuo, the film was released this summer and earned $17 million in Chinese theaters.

Franchise film “Yugo & Lala IV” earned only fractionally less, $15.4 million, on its theatrical run. The latest installment sees a smart and lively girl team up with her father to search for her mother in a mysterious world.

“One Hundred Thousand Bad Jokes II” is adapted from a popular Chinese comic series of the same name and is a sequel to the Tencent-backed 2016 predecessor. Among the comedy elements, is a story of a young boy who is looking for a holy staff.

“Chinese animation films are improving in quality these days. We really hope to bring these excellent films to the global market.” HGC CEO Peter Li said.

Established in 2006, HGC is one of China’s oldest film companies. It has since built a catalog of some 600 titles, and its range of activities today includes finance, distribution, merchandising and sales. Its upcoming titles include “Hellboy 3,” “the 12th Man,” “Mersal,” “Lakshmi” and “Terra Willy and “Bikeman.”

The company picked up Asian sales rights (excluding Japan and Taiwan) to “Amundsen” from SF Studios on the eve of the AFM. It plans a Chine release in Spring 2019, shortly after the film’s outing in its home market, scheduled for February. Focusing on the live of Antarctic adventurer Roald Amundsen, the film is directed by Espen Sandberg (“Kon-Tiki,” “Pirates of the Caribbean 5”).

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