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'Forbidden Kingdom' opens to public
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Cast members of The Forbidden Kingdom including (Left to Right) Jet Li, Liu Yifei, Rob Minkoff, Li Bingbing, Yuen Woo-Ping and Jackie Chan pose at the press release in Beijing on Tuesday afternoon. [Photo: CRIENGLISH.com/ Xu Liuliu]

It is not a story about the Forbidden City, but its world premiere ceremony will be held in Beijing. The Forbidden Kingdom, featuring performances by martial masters Jackie Chan and Jet Li, came before the press with its premiere in Beijing on Tuesday afternoon. The press conference was attended by both kungfu stars as well as director Rob Minkoff and female leads Liu Yifei and Li Bingbing.

"The Forbidden Kingdom" is being heavily promoted as the first film starring both Jackie Chan and Jet Li, an opportunity Li said both he and longtime friend Chan had waited for 15 years. He said working together made them even closer, like brothers.

Besides the opportunity to play opposite Jackie Chan, Jet Li took the role in the hope of entertaining his daughter. The story is about the imagination of a young man, a westerner's interpretation of ancient China.

When people think of martial arts, Rob Minkoff might not be the first name that comes to one's mind. Luckily, he could rely on experts like Jet Li, Jackie Chan and Yuen Woo-Ping for this film.

The English-language action adventure was inspired by the classic Chinese legend of the Monkey King. However, critics are saying that the Chinese audience may not accept the story, which is different from the original legend. Minkoff explained that the story is a dream, which anyone could have.

At the press conference, both Jackie Chan and Jet Li said they expected to do another big screen collaboration. Both remained reluctant to give specific details on the project.

There will be a global premiere ceremony to be held in Eastern Beijing's Chaoyang Park on Wednesday, organizers say. It is set to open in North America on April 18, and in Asia on April 24.

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