Fox International Productions has built a small yet thriving business making low-budget foreign-language movies that almost never travel beyond their country of origin. But now Fox International and China Lion will try to see if there is an American audience for one such local-language production, scheduling a Sept. 9 U.S. release for the Chinese romantic comedy “Love in Space.”
Since October, China Lion has released seven Chinese films in U.S. theaters, hoping Chinese Americans (and perhaps some English-speaking art house enthusiasts) will turn out. So far, the results have been spotty. China Lion’s highest-grossing release, 2010’s “If You Are the One 2,” grossed $427,000 domestically, a fraction of what it made in China.
The returns were materially poorer for some other titles, which include the Communist Party history “Beginning of the Great Revival” and a Mandarin-language remake of “What Women Want.”
Fox International has made movies in India, Russia and Brazil, among other places, with its Hong Kong-based comedy “Hot Summer Days” among the most successful. “Love in Space” comes from the same directors as “Hot Summer Days,” Wing Shya and Tony Chan. The film, which opens in China the same time the film premieres in North America, stars Aaron Kwok, René Liu, Eason Chan, Gwei Lun Mei, Angelababy, Jing Boran and Xu Fan.
-- John Horn
Photo: Movie poster of "Hot Summer Days." Credit: Fox International Productions