Hong Kong comedy legend Stephen Chow to produce online movies for Chinese streaming website Tencent Video

Hong Kong comedy star Stephen Chow has inked a deal with Tencent to produce online movies. — CinemaOnline pic

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KUALA LUMPUR, June 16 — Hong Kong comedy star Stephen Chow has inked a deal with Chinese technology conglomerate Tencent to produce online movies for the firm’s streaming channel Tencent Video.

The deal came through following Chow’s recent commitment to produce an animated Monkey King feature for Netflix.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the partnership was announced during Tencent Video’s annual conference on the eve of the Shanghai International Film Festival.

Under the collaboration, the 58-year-old filmmaker will produce some of Tencent Video’s online films, however, no further details on the planned release dates or storylines were provided.

Chow said in the video he was looking forward to the collaboration and hoped he could bring more good work to the public.

It took place days after updates of Chow’s legal battle with Shanghai New Culture Media surfaced.

Chow is being sued for US$131 million (RM539 million) over alleged breach of contract, in which the movie star had reportedly failed to deliver on his pledge to make a profit of at least US$163 million (RM695 million) in three years.

Although there are not many details on his Tencent deal yet, it was reported that Chow’s move for streaming platforms is seen as a bid for career revival after his recent films’ poor performance.

Chow dominated the Hong Kong box office and pop culture scene in the 1990s and early 2000s.

His career also briefly pitched to new heights after shifting focus to the mainland Chinese audience in the 2010s.

In 2016, Chow’s romantic comedy The Mermaid dominated the New Year’s holiday box office, driving up February ticket sales to a record and setting the all-time high for a single film.

However, his The New King of Comedy in 2019, a sequel to his 1999 film, only earned him $97 million (RM399 million) in China and didn’t even make the top ten of the year.