BURBANK, Calif. and SHANGHAI, Nov. 22 — The Walt Disney Company in China today announced the start of production on its third local co-production project in just two years, “Disney High School Musical: China.” Working with local partners Shanghai Media Group (SMG) and Huayi Brothers Media Corporation, the movie is planned for cinematic release in summer 2010.
Under development for over a year, and created uniquely for Chinese audiences, “Disney High School Musical: China” is the story of a new student who meets a gifted young man with whom she shares a secret passion for singing. With the help of their friends they overcome the odds to win an inter-school singing competition, and discover their true calling in the process.
“Disney’s ongoing commitment to local content development underpins our strategy to connect with new audiences around the world,” said Mr. Jason Reed, general manager, Walt Disney Studios International Production. “Our local team has done an amazing job and we are fortunate to be building on the Disney Channel’s success by working with a world class cast and crew led by our producer Janet Yang and visionary director Shi Zheng Chen.
“The choice of the right stories and best local partners is key to the success of our localization strategy. Shanghai Media Group and Huayi Brothers Media Corporation are leaders in their field and their involvement and contribution to this project is invaluable,” added Mr. Reed.
In 2007, the Studio’s first Disney branded local co-production, the award-winning, “The Magic Gourd” was released, followed by “Roadside Romeo” from India in 2008, “Trail of the Panda” (China 2009) and the feature film, “Book of Masters” (Russian 2009), based on a classic Russian fairy tale which opened in first place at the box office in October. Disney’s sixth local production “Zokkomon” is currently in development in India and is expected to open in 2010.