A star-studded cast for the Chinese film adaptation of Giacomo Puccini's famous opera "Turandot" was revealed Monday.
Three posters for the movie "The Curse of Turandot" (Photo: China Magic Film)
Titled "The Curse of Turandot," the film is directed by Zheng Xiaolong and stars young actress Guan Xiaotong, veteran actors Jiang Wen and Hu Jun, as well as French actress Sophie Marceau and American actor Dylan Sprouse. Guan, one of the leading actresses of the new generation, takes on the title role of Chinese princess Turandot. Screenwriter Wang Xiaoping wrote the script.
Producers also released three striking posters for the movie this Monday showing giant bracelets of different colors circling ominously above a castle, demonstrating the production's magical and fantasy elements and a looming empire war.
The movie is based on the iconic Italian opera, which is set in China and tells the story of Prince Calaf, who falls in love with the cold-hearted Princess Turandot. The prince must solve three riddles in order to marry her, with a single wrong answer punishable by death.
The film adaptation will further explore how a Khan empire conquers a small country called Malviya which is home to three cursed bracelets, according to newly unveiled information by the movie's producers. The new plot additions help expand the adaptation from a mystery-filled love story into a war and fantasy epic.
Although "Turandot" is well-known globally, it is still relatively exotic to audiences in China. In fact, the name "Turandot" is not Chinese in origin, but rather a Persian word meaning "the daughter of Turan" —Turan being a former region in the Persian Empire.
The film's helmsman, Zheng Xiaolong, is a highly acclaimed director and screenwriter in China. He is known for several hit TV series such as the country's first sitcom "Stories from the Editorial Board" (1991), the first Chinese TV series shot in the United States "A Native of Beijing in New York" (1992), and his film adaptation of the novel "Red Sorghum" by Nobel laureate Mo Yan. Zheng has also previously directed two hugely popular historical TV dramas, "Empresses in the Palace" (2011) and "The Legend of Mi Yue" (2015).
Shooting began on "The Curse of Turandot" in March 2018, and the film is currently in post-production. An official release date has yet to be announced.