Nu Image is in talks to partner with a Chinese distributor for the upcoming “The Expendables” sequel and will likely shoot some scenes in that country reports The L.A. Times.
The deal is expected to generate about $8 million from the local company with which it works. More importantly it guarantees the film a release in China without having to worry about navigating the strictly regulated system imposed on foreign films.
The Chinese government allows approximately twenty “revenue-sharing slots” per year for imported pictures. The first film missed out on that, so it had to sell rights to a local distributor for a flat fee said to be under $1 million. The film went onto gross an impressive $32.1 million in the Chinese market alone.
There’s a catch, to ensure the film can shoot scenes in China it has to be approved by government censors and thus “can’t be detrimental to China” according to Nu Image’s CFO Trevor Short. Nu Image tried to score such a deal for its recent “Conan the Barbarian” reboot without success.