Maybe so, according to The Film Stage:
After a few rumored titles, we can now officially call it Heroes of Nanking, as Hero and House of Flying Daggers director Yimou Zhang has made “the most expensive movie ever made in China” with this epic. The drama, costing $94 million, stars Christian Bale as an American priest named John who takes refuge in a church with 13 prostitutes and a group of innocent schoolgirls during the fighting between Chinese and Japanese troops in 1937.
Variety now reports when we can expect the film in theaters here stateside, after it bows on December 16th in China. Zhang tells us that he will “make a decision at the Toronto Film Festival about the North American distribution,” after studios have already drummed up interest, including Universal and Fox. The director hopes it will see a Christmas release here in the US, which would make it eligible for awards consideration.
It is nice to hear Zhang is looking at major distributors, which means a likely wide release. I’m sure once a distributor comes aboard they will figure out a release strategy in the currently jam-packed holiday week stretch that includes The Adventures of Tintin, The Darkest Hour, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol, We Bought a Zoo, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, In the Land of Blood and Honey and War Horse.
They are all heavy awards contenders (minus the one sci-fi flick), so it will be interesting to see how Zhang’s epic will fit it. The Variety article also reveals the long road to production, as it took the writers three years to get the script into working order, two years to find a star. Then it finally took Bale five months to accept the offer after careful consideration, while actually helping with the script as well. Check out a synopsis below and we’ll find out who picks up the film in just a few weeks, if all goes as planned.
In 1937, Nanjing stands at the forefront of a war between China and Japan. Inspired by true life events, and starring Christian Bale as an American trapped in the middle of battle, HEROES OF NANKING follows the epic journey of John (Bale) and 13 courtesans as they seek refuge in a church compound together with a group of innocent schoolgirls from the church.
Struggling to survive the violence and persecution brought on by the ruthless Japanese army, an act of heroism leads the group to fight back and risk their lives for the sake of everyone. Through treacherous surroundings and facing unimaginable evil, HEROES OF NANKING manages to tell a genuine story of hope, love and sacrifice. With nowhere to run and nowhere to hide, fate always has a way of bringing the most unlikely heroes together. Starring Academy Award winner Christian Bale (The Fighter), HEROES OF NANKING is written and directed by Yimou Zhang (Hero, House of Flying Daggers)..
Do you think Nanking could be an Oscar contender? Will we actually see it by the end of the year?
-Joey's Two Cents: Fingers crossed it comes out...thoughts?