Singer-actress Karen Mok has been announced as the female lead of Keanu Reeves’ directorial debut “Man of Tai Chi”, according to Mtime.com.
Mok will play a police officer in the movie.
The casting progress has lasted for a few months in China. A number of top Chinese actresses were rumored to be joining the movie including Zhang Ziyi, Gong Li, Liu Yifei and Huang Shengyi.
Previous reports have indicated that Chen Hu, the kung fu coach for Reeves, will play the lead role. Reeves will play opposite him as a villain.
“Man of Tai Chi” is a modern kung fu flick with a tai chi twist. China Film Group, Village Roadshow Asia, Wanda Media and Universal Pictures will co-produce the movie. Universal Pictures will be in charge of its release in North America.
Keanu Reeves’ directorial debut has been picked up by Universal Pictures.
The ‘Speed’ actor will helm ‘Man of Tai Chi’, which will be shot in China and co-financed by Universal, Village Roadshow Pictures Asia, China Film Group and Wanda Media.
Universal International president David Kosse said the opportunity to become further involved in the Chinese market, as well as to bring Chinese films to audiences around the world, is a priority for the studio.
He said: “‘Man of Tai Chi’ has an amazing pedigree of filmmakers and we’re thrilled to be a part of Keanu’s directorial debut.”
Village Roadshow Entertainment Group CEO Glen Basser added: “We are pleased to announce ‘Man of Tai Chi’ under the Village Roadshow Pictures Asia label and to extend our long-standing relationship with Keanu.”
Set in contemporary Beijing, ‘Man of Tai Chi’, stars Tiger Chen, who plays a young martial artist.
Keanu, who is currently in China, will shoot the film in Mandarin and English, and is set to start production in February.