Sony Pictures International & Taiwan’s Activator To Co-Produce Paranormal Comedy ‘Dead Talents Society’01/18/2022
EXCLUSIVE: In yet another of a recent string of intriguing local-language projects, Sony Pictures International Productions is teaming with Taiwan’s Activator to co-produce paranormal comedy Dead Talents Society. SPIP has also acquired worldwide distribution rights in addition to closing a deal for global remake rights.
Directed by John Hsu (Detention), the feature is based on his short film which he also wrote (check it out below). The premise centers around ghosts who strive to be the most successful and famous stars in the underworld through their scare tactics and performances amongst the living. The end goal is to become the spookiest of urban legends.
The film is set to start production in 2022 and slated for a theatrical release in Taiwan via Sony Pictures Releasing Taiwan in 2023.
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Bolin Chen (In Time With You) and Sandrine Pinna (Yang Yang) are set to star. Award-winning Taiwanese filmmakers Lieh Lee, Aileen Li and Ivy Chen are serving as producers.
“We fell in love with this project the moment we saw it,” says Michael Rifkin, Co-Head of Sony Pictures International Productions. “Dead Talents Society is a perfect example of the high concept stories coming out of Taiwan right now. We are pleased to be able to partner with Activator again, and to support the growing local film industry in Taiwan which has been one of the most resilient throughout the pandemic and to continue our investment in the Asian market.”
Adds Ken Yu, Managing Director of Sony Pictures Releasing Taiwan, “Sony Pictures International Productions is committed to working with local talent in Asia’s booming film industry, and we’re always on the lookout for investment projects that have the potential to go global. When we first saw the short film for Dead Talents Society, we contacted our U.S. headquarters right away about the project. We’re fully confident in this collaboration, and we sincerely hope that the limitless potential of Taiwan’s film industry can be seen and appreciated around the world.”
Producer Chen says SPIP “showed us nothing but optimism and support, and that’s something I can’t be thankful enough for. Due to the pandemic, our shooting schedule was delayed, and we were worried that this would throw a wrench into the whole project. However, the studio still has backed us with respect and patience, and that’s what has led to a successful collaboration.”
Lee adds, “Over the years we have worked with several international studios to bring local content to global markets, so having Sony Pictures International Productions’ generous support and investment on this film is one giant leap for the development and future of Taiwan’s film industry.” For Li, “Our goal, along with Sony Pictures International Productions, is to make a great comedic movie that’s touching and refreshingly different and that moviegoers will thoroughly enjoy.”
SPIP’s local releases in Taiwan have included box office successes i WEiRDO, Do You Love Me As I Love You, Your Name Engraved Herein, Man In Love and last year’s Golden Horse Best Feature Film winner The Falls.
Here’s the short take on Dead Talents Society:
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