Zhang Yimou’s Epic Starring Christian Bale Now Titled THE FLOWERS OF WAR

     September 9, 2011


Director Zhang Yimou’s latest effort, a war epic starring Christian Bale, now has a new moniker—The Flowers of War. Formerly referred to as 13 Flowers of Nanjing (as well as Heroes of Nanking), the film is based on Yan Geiling’s historical novel. The multi-linguial pic takes place in 1937 and tells the story of a group of people who take refuge inside a cathedral as the invading Japanese Imperial Army takes over Nanking. Yimou shot the movie approximately 40% in English and 60% in Mandarin. The director previously helmed the features A Woman, a Gun, and a Noodle Shop, and Under the Hawthorn Tree. The Flowers of War will have its World Premiere in Beijing, China on December 16, 2011.


zhang-yimou-imageHere’s the full press release:


New Pictures Film and FilmNation Entertainment Unveil Twenty Minutes of Footage of The Flowers of War in Toronto

Toronto, Sept. 9, 2011: Producer Zhang Weiping, under his New Pictures Film banner unveiled twenty minutes of footage of internationally acclaimed and award-winning Chinese director Zhang Yimou’s (House of Flying Daggers, Hero) THE FLOWERS OF WAR, previously operating under the temporary title Heroes of Nanking, starring Academy Award® winning actor Christian Bale (The Fighter; The Dark Knight). THE FLOWERS OF WAR is produced by Zhang Weiping and executive produced by David Linde and Chaoying Deng.

FilmNation Entertainment is handling international sales of the film outside of the United States, China, and a few major Asian countries. North American rights will be licensed directly by New Pictures Films and producers Deng and Linde and Stephen Saltzman of Loeb & Loeb.

Inspired by true life events, THE FLOWERS OF WAR tells a genuine story of hope, love and sacrifice. Set in 1937, Nanking stands at the forefront of a war between China and Japan. As the invading Japanese Imperial Army overruns China’s capital city, desperate civilians seek refuge behind the nominally protective walls of a western cathedral.  Here, John Haufman (Bale), an American trapped amidst the chaos of battle and the ensuing occupation takes shelter, joined by a group of innocent schoolgirls and thirteen courtesans, equally determined to escape the horrors taking place outside the church walls.

Struggling to survive the violence and persecution wrought by the Japanese army, it is an act of heroism which eventually leads the seemingly disparate group to fight back, risking their lives for the sake of everyone.  With nowhere to run and nowhere to hide, fate always has a way of bringing the most unlikely heroes together.

Based on a screenplay by Heng Liu (Assembly, The Story of Qiu Ju) and adapted by Geling Yan’s historical novel, THE FLOWERS OF WAR is approximately 40% in English and 60% in Mandarin.  The film will have its world premiere in Beijing, China on December 16, 2011.

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