Human: China’s HiShow Unveils ‘Game Changer’ Production Slate at FilMart
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By Vivienne Chow
China’s HiShow Entertainment has unveiled a slate of new productions ahead of the first online edition of Hong Kong FilMart. Its lineup includes the highly-anticipated series “Game Changer.”
Scheduled to be released in the fourth quarter this year, “Game Changer” is one of a handful of mainland Chinese drama series that tells a contemporary urban story, with “fast-paced American-style” storytelling that is intended to appeal to overseas audiences, according to Wang Haiyi, HiShow’s head of the international business.
Starring heartthrob Huang Xiaoming (“American Dreams in China,” “The Bravest”) as a journalist-turned-publicist alongside Tan Zhuo (“Dying to Survive,” “Story of Yanxi Palace”), Cai Wenjing and Zhang Bo, the 40-episode series dives into the world of public relations with stories revolving around the crisis management arm of a PR firm.
The show is made by Hui Kaidong, who was behind “Story of Yanxi Palace,” the sensational costume drama that became one of China’s all-time top series. It is expected to be a headliner for the Alibaba-owned streamer Youku’s fall schedule.
While “Game Changer” and TV production represent a new direction for HiShow, the producer-distributor is still sticking with what it does best, seeking out new film titles that appeal to the festival circuit. “Wind,” a screen adaptation of an award-winning novel by Tibetan author A Lai, is the directorial debut of Tibetan director Dadren Wanggyai. Starring Sonam Wangmo, Genden Phunstok and Tsering Drolma, the film follows the life journey of a Tibetan girl.
Layla Jl tells the tale of two devastated mothers who are on a quest to uncover the truth of a brutal murder of a high school boy in her directorial debut “Victim(s).” The Malaysian-Chinese film has already bagged the Silver Mulberry at the Udine Far East Film Festival this year. It has also appeared in the First Youth Film Festival and New York Asian Film Festival.
Rounding out HiShow’s offering is crime drama “Aksa,” a directorial debut by Chinese female filmmaker Elain Xu. The story is inspired by real events that follow the disappearance of a woman.