Donnie Yen Chi Tan -- nicknamed 'Strongest In The Universe -- officially became a 1 billion Mainland box office lead actor with his Lunar New Year film THE MONKEY KING (SAI YAU GEI ji DAI LAU TIN GUNG), naturally becoming hot property in the film industry.
A Hollywood film even made him an astronomical offer, but Donnie turned it down as he decided to make CROUCHING TIGER HIDDEN DRAGON 2 (NGOR FU CHONG LUNG II TEET KEH NGAN JUNG).
Leaving money on the table, Donnie wanted to work with action director and mentor Lord Eight Yuen Wo Ping. In addition, Hollywood film company boss Harvey Weinstein and producer David Thwaites' sincerity finally moved Donnie.
Donnie felt that Harvey had already began to persuade him to make CROUCHING II ten years ago, making the trip from the U.S. many times to negotiate with him and tailor the character for him, reports Hktopten.
When the film was rumored to have a recasting earlier on, Harvey immediately made a statement to clarify. Donnie was moved, and even the film about Kowloon Walled City that he originally wanted to film in has to make room for CROUCHING II.
In addition, Harvey earlier purchased THE GRANDMASTER (YUT DOI JUNG SI)'s U.S. release rights and deserved credit for the film's Best Costume Design and Best Cinematography Oscar nominations.
His CROUCHING II will follow CROUCHING TIGER HIDDEN DRAGON's Oscar success, which is why the world has been looking forward to the Donnie Yen-starred sequel that will start shooting in New Zealand this summer.
Everything is in place for CROUCHING II except the production start.
Earlier, Donnie and his wife Cissy Wang dined with Lord Eight at a top hotel's Chinese restaurant. At around 6.40pm, Donnie and his family arrived at the hotel. Obviously, Donnie's relationship with Lord Eight was more than just professional.
Dinner lasted two hours. At around 9.20pm, Donnie stepped out of the hotel with Lord Eight. While waiting for his vehicle, Donnie had his arm around Lord Eight's shoulder and chatted. He also hailed a taxi for him. Lord Eight smiled in response.
After Lord Eight got into the car, Donnie, Cissy and her mother waved goodbye. Despite the chill, Chi Tan still insisted on watching Lord Eight's taxi leave the hotel before he was willing to return to the hotel.
CROUCHING II's cast has already been confirmed to be Donnie and Michelle Yeoh, as well as a pair of famous young actor and actress. The actress will play Yu Shulien's adopted daughter. The film company was interested in Tang Wei for the role.