Stephen Chow (周星驰) is reportedly reuniting with his Shaolin Soccer <少林足球> costar Vicki Zhao (赵薇) for the sequel of his 2013 fantasy film Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons <西遊·降魔篇>, one of the highest-grossing Chinese-language films in the world.
The film is produced by Stephen and Alibaba Pictures, the film division of Chinese e-commerce company Alibaba. In December 2014, Vicki and her husband Huang Youlong (黄有龙) paid $3 billion HKD for 9.18 percent of Alibaba Pictures through their investment company Gold Ocean Media, becoming the second largest shareholders of the production company. It was said that Vicki had expressed an interest in Stephen’s new film and asked him to write a role for her.
Vicki and Stephen’s first collaboration was in 2001’s Shaolin Soccer. The costars were reportedly very awkward with each other on set, as Stephen once scolded Vicki to tears. More than ten years later, Vicki released her directorial debut So Young <致我们终将逝去的青春>, which surpassed the advanced box office sales of Journey to the West: Conquering the Demons. Vicki said, “I finally defeated Stephen Chow!”
Journey to the West 2 will be directed by Tsui Hark (徐克), while Stephen will stay behind-the-scenes to produce. Original cast members Shu Qi (舒淇) and Wen Zhang (文章) will be returning. Stephen will be writing in a new character for Vicki in the sequel.
In the meantime, Stephen is finishing up the post-production work for The Mermaid <美人鱼>, his first film with Alibaba Pictures.
This article is written by Addy for JayneStars.com.