Taiwanese director Tsai Yueh Hsun (蔡岳勳), who helmed the Black & White <痞子英雄> television drama starring Vic Chou (周渝民) and its movie prequel, recently announced that the second movie spin-off, titled Black & White II <痞子英雄2：黎明升起>, will open in theaters this summer in 3D.
Although many fans criticized Black & White Episode I: The Dawn of Assault <痞子英雄首部曲：全面開戰> for not securing the return of Vic Chou, the film was still extremely successful, raking in almost 100 million RMB at the box office. Black & White II will see Mark Chao (趙又廷) and Huang Bo (黃渤) reprising their roles from the first movie, with the anticipated additions of mainland Chinese actor Lin Gengxin (林更新) and Uyghur-Chinese actress Guli Nazha (古力娜扎). The film will also feature Xiu Jiekai (修杰楷), Janine Chang (張鈞甯), and Jason Tsou (鄒承恩), all of whom appeared in the original drama.
In order to improve on the stunning visual effects in Black & White I, director Tsai chose to film Black & White II in 3D, though he insisted his team was not merely jumping on the 3D bandwagon. “We didn’t do 3D for the sake of being 3D,” he said. “After we assessed it with a professional team, everyone thought the movie’s story, setting, and action were all suitable for filming in 3D.”
Director Tsai ended up assembling a top-notch production team with members from all over the world. BUF Compagnie, which won Best Visual Effects for The Grandmaster <一代宗師> at last year’s Golden Horse Awards, is in charge of special effects, while the 3D post-production will be handled by Soulpower Films, the first Chinese company to produce a full-length 3D live-action motion picture (Painted Skin: The Resurrection <畫皮II>). The film’s art director will be Japan’s Yoshihito Akatsuka (赤冢佳仁), who worked as the set director for Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale <賽德克巴萊> and The Flowers of War <金陵十三釵>.
The stunt coordination and action directing will be in the hands of Jack Gill and Ron Yuan respectively. Gill, who won the 2012 World Stunt Award for Best Stunt Coordinator for his work on Fast Five, designed the highway and helicopter chases for Black & White II. Yuan, a Chinese-American martial artist, actor, and stunt choreographer, complied with the director’s difficult request that the actors use real guns and live ammunition during fight scenes. “The director really wanted us to fight until we felt pain,” recalled Mark Chao. “This way, the audience would also feel more pain while watching.”
Black & White II spared no expense for the production, spending 16 million RMB to construct a special effects film studio in Kaohsiung. With a surface area of more than 15,000 square meters, the studio is Asia’s biggest special effects film studio. After the filming of Black & White II, the studio will be converted into a miniature film cinema and serve as a Kaohsiung tourist attraction.
This article is written by Joanna for JayneStars.com.