Wong Kar-Wai was forced to suspend production on his new film “Blossoms” in February amid the coronavirus pandemic in China, but Variety reports the project is now getting back on track with a planned shoot set to begin this July. According to Variety, Wong’s production has booked mainland China’s Hengdian World Studios from May to March 2021. The studio is located in the coastal Zhejiang province. Wong originally planned to film “Blossoms” on location in Shanghai, but it will be safer to manage safety precautions and film in a studio than on the streets of China.
Wong has already teased “Blossoms” as a spiritual sequel to his landmark 2000 romance drama “In the Mood for Love,” similar to his 2004 directorial effort “2046.” The feature film is based on Jin Yucheng’s 2013 novel and follows the lives of three Shanghai residents from the end of China’s Cultural Revolution in the 1960s through their life in America in the 1990s. The project marks Wong’s first feature since “The Grandmaster” in 2013. The director told Filmmaker Magazine last year that his personal ties to Jin Yucheng’s novel brought him back to moviemaking.
“I think the Chinese-American experience has a lot of connections and inference with what’s becoming modern China now,” Wong said. “It’s a very interesting history and experience that hasn’t been addressed properly, and I think that would be something that would be very interesting to do.”
It shouldn’t surprise fans of Wong Kar-Wai that the director has booked Hengdian World Studios for 11 months to shoot “Blossoms.” The director is famous for taking his time while in production. As Variety noted, “In the Mood for Love” spent 15 months filming. “2046” filming lasted nearly five years, while Wong spent 15 years conceiving, writing, and shooting “The Grandmaster.”
Variety also notes that Wong is producing an online TV series based on “Blossoms” for Tencent Video. Shen Yan, who directed the popular 2017 Chinese TV show “The First Half of My Life,” is helming the project. Wong had his own television series in development at Amazon called “Tong Wars,” but the project never moved forward past the development stage. With the “Blossoms” shoot planned through March 2021, expect a late 2021 or 2022 release date.