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Keanu Reeves lands financing, distribution for film

Keanu Reeves: Directorial debut. — Reuters pic Keanu Reeves: Directorial debut. — Reuters pic LOS ANGELES, Dec 16 — Keanu Reeves has secured financing and distribution for his directorial debut, the martial-arts film “Man of Tai Chi”.

Village Roadshow Pictures Asia will co-produce the movie with China Film Group and Wanda Media Group. The film will be co-financed and distributed by the co-producing partners and Universal Pictures.

Production will start in Beijing in February. Additional filming will take place in Hong Kong and Macau.

Reeves and his team were now in China, Universal Pictures said.

TheWrap exclusively reported in August that China Film Group and Village Roadshow Pictures were in negotiations to get funding for the film.

The picture will be distributed by Village Roadshow Pictures Asia affiliates in Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, by China Film Group and Wanda Media Group in Greater China, and by Universal in the rest of the world.

“The opportunity to get further involved in the Chinese market and to bring Chinese films to audiences around the world is important to Universal,” David Kosse, president of Universal’s international division, said in a statement. “‘Man of Tai Chi’ has an amazing pedigree of filmmakers.”

Lemore Syvan is producing.

Reeves also wrote and will star in the film, which will be in Mandarin and English. The “Speed” star plays the villain in the movie, which includes some serious fighting scenes.

Reeves showed off his martial arts chops in “The Matrix” films and, earlier this year, finished filming “47 Ronin”, Universal’s adaptation of the Japanese martial arts picture.

“Tai Chi” also stars Tiger Chen, a member of the kung fu team in “The Matrix”. — Reuters

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