Tencent Pictures celebrated its second year anniversary on Sep 17 and held a press conference in Beijing themed, “Together, We Achieve Beyond.” It’s hard to imagine that the company is only two years old, then again so is Tencent Penguin Pictures, and both belong under the giant umbrella of Tencent.
Hence, it’s not at all surprising to see that it has struck deals with bigger, more reputable companies to produce a long line of dramas and movies, many of which are based on novels and comics belonging to Tencent subsidiaries like China Literature and Tencent Dong Man.
Qing Yu Nian 庆余年 is among the most-anticipated ones. The drama is adapted from the novel by Mao Ni 猫腻 who also wrote Fighter of the Destiny, and it has just unveiled Zhang Ruo Yun as the titular lead.
There certainly seems to be a common theme across Mao Ni’s works in that the story also centers around a sick young man reborn with a new identity. He then picks up special skills along the way and gets pulled into the political power plays of his time. It is directed by Sun Hao with a screenplay by Wang Juan Ren and Chen Ying Jie. Filming is expected to begin in early 2018.
The drama is one of of three collaborations between Tencent and New Classics Media that also include Zhui Xu and I Am A Superstar.
On top of that, there are plans to continue the story from Fighter of the Destiny with a drama titled New Fighter of the Destiny to be written by Li Meng, and a movie produced by Huang Jian Xin. It’s too early to know whether Luhan and any members of the old cast will return to reprise their roles.
Even so, the company does favor Luhan as he signs on for the movie adaptation of Shanghai Fortress 上海堡垒 opposite famed movie star Shu Qi. The story is based on a science fiction novel by Jiang Nan 江南 about aliens invading the earth, and Shanghai stands on the brink of destruction if not for the young heroes who fight to defend it.
Lay Zhang Yixing’s upcoming archeological adventure drama The Golden Eyes 黄金瞳 is adapted from a novel by Da Yan 打眼. It has Nan Pai San Shu 南派三叔 as Producer and Lin Nan as Director. All three have worked together before due to The Mystic Nine which is a drama adapted from the Grave Robbers Chronicles novels by Nan Pai San Shu. Filming is expected to begin in November.
The cast and crew of the drama adaptation of Mystery of Antiques 古董局中局 came as a group, as they’ve been filming together since July. This to be another adventure in the mystery suspensne genre and it is led by Xia Yu, Qiao Zhenyu, Cai Wenjing and Huang Hai Bing. Ma Bo Yong 马伯庸 who authored the source novel also attended the event.
The cast of the 2009 drama iPartment 爱情公寓 led by Chen He, Lou Yi Xiao, Sean Sun Yizhou, Deng Jia Jia, Li Jia Hang and Kimi Li Jing Ming gathered onstage for a mini reunion for the first time in years. They are back for a new movie that is more likely than not, a romantic comedy in the making.
We’ve got another ensemble cast that includes Song Yang, Qi Xi, Qu Jing Jing and Wang Lie. They take the lead in Pathfinder 拓星者, a movie adapted from a manhua of the sama name. Science fiction seems to be a prevailing theme across the list as this one tells a story revolving a group of pathfinders struggling to survive in outer space.
Pro-tennis player Li Na and her husband Jiang Shan came for the unveiling of the upcoming drama Prince of Tennis 网球王子 which will be adapted from a popular Japanese manga of the same name. It is an idol drama brought via a collaboration between Tencent and EE-Media. The cast has not yet been announced except for Li Na and Jiang Shan who will be making a special appearance. Filming is expected to begin January 2018.
Meanwhile, there’s a whole bunch of dramas or movies that still only have conceptual posters. The King’s Avatar 全职高手 which was made into an anime has previously announced a live-action version starring Yang Yang, but it looks like they’re gearing up to turn it into an animated movie too.
Zombie Brother 我叫白小飞 is another animated movie in the pipeline, and it is being marketed as a hilarious zombie movie for domestic and international audiences alike. Channing Tatum, Peter Kiernan and Reid Carolin are listed as producers with David Sandberg as director and Matt Liberman as the screenwriter. So, it’s in English?
Delicious Supplier 供应商 is a drama showcasing Chinese food. Huang Lei who played the Chef in Midnight Diner is involved with the production, but he will not be acting in it.
Ass9ssins 刺客道 is another drama that brings back the same team from Tientsin Mystic.
The New Story of a Noble Family 新金粉世家 is a remake of the 2003 drama of the same name that starred Chen Kun, Dong Jie and Crystal Liu when she was just starting out.
The critically-acclaimed drama Chinese Style Relationship 中国式关系 gets a sequel.
Guardian of Light 守夜者 which is written by Qin Ming 秦明 who wrote Medical Examiner Dr. Xin will also be getting a drama adaptation.
The Tibet Code 藏地密码 which is a series of novels by He Ma 何马 has gotten quite the anticipation that it gets not just a drama remake but also a movie that is setup to be a Chinese-American co-production.
Granted that all of the shows above won’t be airing anytime soon, there are two things that viewers can look forward to. Hanson and the Beast starring Crystal Liu and Feng Shao Feng is scheduled to hit theaters in December, while the drama Fights Break Sphere starring Wu Lei and Jelly Lin has been in post-production since July, which means that it will probably air earlier than the rest.