Martial arts superstars Jackie Chan and Jet Li will pair for the first time in an action epic about an American teenager obsessed with Hong Kong movies and kung-fu classics.
The Forbidden Kingdom will start shooting on May 2 in China, the independent studio Lionsgate announced on Wednesday.
Rob Minkoff, who made Stuart Little and The Lion King, will direct the movie whose screenplay is based on the traditional Chinese legend of the Monkey King.
Martial arts choreographer Yuen Woo-ping, known for his work in the The Matrix and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, will design the action sequences, and cinematographer Peter Pau, who made Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, will shoot the movie.
In the film, the American teenager makes an extraordinary discovery in a Chinatown pawnshop -- the legendary stick weapon of the Chinese sage and warrior, the Monkey King.
With the lost relic in hand, the teenager unexpectedly finds himself traveling back to ancient China and joining a group of warriors on a dangerous quest to free the imprisoned Monkey King.
Lionsgate plans a US theatrical release in the summer of 2008and will co-release the film with The Weinstein Co., which will handle distribution in Spain, France and Latin America.
(Xinhua News Agency April 12, 2007)