Film studios to launch Chinese HBO

Updated: 2012-02-17 13:50

By Liu Wei (China Daily)

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Three major film studios have joined hands with a Hong Kong TV network to launch a Chinese-language HBO in Hong Kong.

Huayi Brothers International, Edko Films and Hong Kong director Peter Chan’s We Pictures are working with Hong Kong-based Now TV to set up a movie channel named Now Popcorn.

Huayi Brothers International, a subsidiary of Huayi Brothers Media Corporation, the largest privately owned media group on the mainland, will have a 21.66 percent stake in the joint venture, according to a report filed at the Shenzhen Stock Exchange on Feb 15.

It is the first time the three studios have worked in the pay-TV industry.

Huayi, as well as We Pictures, will provide the content. Chan’s kungfu flick Wuxia will be the first film to air on Mar 15.

Huayi’s rich library of some of the most popular films in China, such as Feng Xiaogang’s comedies, will be on the schedule, too.

Hong Kong-based film studio and distributor Edko Films worked on such films as Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and Hero, will not only provide content, but also be responsible for distribution and promotion.

Popcorn Channel will have exclusive broadcast rights to the Huayi Brothers film Love, the latest production of Huayi Brothers, a romantic comedy which grossed more than 40 million yuan ($6.1 million) since it premiered on Feb 13.