What does "The Matrix" trilogy, Quentin Tarantino's "Kill Bill" films and Wong Kar-Wai's eventually arriving "The Grandmasters" all have in common? The assistance of legendary Hong Kong action choreographer Yuen Woo-ping. And while Hollywood has come calling for his skills, he hasn't really felt the need to crossover here. He already has a lucrative and celebrated career at home, not only for his stunt work and ability to make punches, kicks and flips looking amazing, but for this directing gigs as well, with movies like "Drunken Master," "Iron Monkey" and "Last Hero In China" all to his name. But now, he's testing the Hollywood waters.
Yuen will helm the awkward-titled "Vigilantes -- The Lost Order," which is actually a Chinese-Canadian production. Guess that's close enough to call Hollywood, right? Anyway, it's described as "The Matrix meets Wall Street," with a story that follows a female assassin who uncovers a conspiracy within the world of high finance (no way) during her quest to avenge the death of her father. It's ambitiously being hyped as “the next big international action franchise” with production set to begin next year with a "Hollywood cast." Maybe his buddy Keanu Reeves will take part? Yuen has been on hand for the action scenes of the actor's directorial debut "Man of Tai Chi" and of course worked with him on The Wachowski's breakthrough sci-fi films. But we'd guess that it will probably star some lower tier folks who are still somewhat recognizable names. But we'd love to be wrong.
The project, which is supposed to be the start of the trilogy is -- you guessed it -- being repped at AFM. [THR]