Following up his two-part 2008 epic "Red Cliff", director John Woo today announced that his next film, the historical drama "Flying Tigers", will be shot entirely in IMAX. Set to begin filming in the spring of 2011, "Flying Tigers" -- which portrays the 1st American Volunteer Group (AVG) of U.S. Army, Navy and Marine pilots who trained a Chinese squadron to fight the Japanese in 1941 and 1942 -- is rumored to have a budget of around US$90 million. From the CBC:
Hong Kong director Woo is working with Lion Rock Productions and China Film Group on the action epic, which has a budget of about $90 million US. It will be bilingual.
Filming is set to begin in spring 2011. No release date has yet been announced.
"It has always been a dream of mine to explore shooting with Imax cameras and to work in the Imax format, and the strong visual element of this film is incredibly well suited to the tastes of cinemagoers today," Woo said in a statement.
Flying Tigers will be the second film Imax Corp. has made for the Chinese market. Its earthquake disaster movie Aftershock, directed by Feng Xiaogang, has become the biggest Chinese-language film to date, taking in $78 million US at the box office.
From the looks of it, "Flying Tigers" could be the first Chinese movie to crack America since "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon". Now we're just waiting to find out who Woo casts in the lead role as Lt. Gen. Claire Lee Chennault -- though Woo has stated he's got Liam Neeson in mind, it's still up in the air.