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IT looks like Chinese comedies continue to make “kerrchingg” sounds at the cash registers. It started with the comedy, Tiger Woohoo, in 2010. Released during Chinese New Year, it collected RM4.2 million at the box office, making it the highest grossing Chinese movie in the country at that time.
Following the success of Tiger Woohoo, director Chiu Keng Guan came up with Great Day, which also proved to be a a hit last year, raking in more than RM6 million at the box office.
Early this year, radio presenter and host Jack Lim took everyone by surprise when his film, Ah Beng The Movie: Three Wishes, raked in more than RM7 million, just a few days after its release.
He will team up with director Silver again in their Chinese New Year movie, Once Upon A Time.
“The story is set 6,000 years ago in China, where a group of people tries to overthrow the Emperor. The Prime Minister hides the emperor and his two servants in a mysterious room and they are transported into the future,” Lim said at a Press conference. “We spent RM1 million to build some of the sets to resemble China 6,000 years ago. From sound effects to costume and set design, we want to make everything as realistic as possible.”
Lim admitted that he had toyed with the idea of filming in China but the budget did not allow it. “We are happy to film here. It’s slightly cheaper this way and we have everything in our own backyard,” he said.
Award-winning actor Rosyam Nor is excited about playing a beggar in the movie. He said: “This will be the first time I am in a Chinese movie. It’s an honour to be a part of the Chinese movie industry, alongside top names. My dialogues will be in Malay.”
Lim is hoping to break his Ah Beng The Movie box-office record with Once Upon A Time and plans to give the cast and crew 10 per cent of the total takings.
Once Upon A Time will include characters from MYFM radio skit Wang Guang Can Lan (Palace Stories) such as Emperor (Lim), imperial servant (Gan Mei Yan) and Prime Minister (Jeff Chin).
Other popular radio deejays, Astro’s television personalities as well as celebrities such as Susan Lankester are expected to make an appearance in the movie too.
Once A Upon A Time is expected to to go on location for 20 days from Sept 11.