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Asian cinema ready to unite

Hong Kong gathering brings region's industry players together for cultural exchange and new projects

By YANG HAN in Hong Kong | China Daily | Updated: 2024-04-06 09:34

Phasit Wacharatham, founder and chief executive of Locman2011, poses for a photo while filming a TV commercial for a Chinese dairy company in Thailand in December.[Photo provided to China Daily]

Phasit Wacharatham is keen to explore more coproduction opportunities with Chinese partners.

Phasit, founder and chief executive of Locman2011, a film-production company in Thailand, said he expects to see more coproduction in Asia's film and TV industry. He was in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region last month for the Hong Kong International Film and TV Market, or Filmart, a cross-media, cross-industry trading platform.

"We met representatives of film production companies from Beijing, Nanjing and Hong Kong and discussed plans for future cooperation," said Phasit, whose company works mainly with Chinese customers in film, streaming media, drama and TV commercials.

Filmart, held from March 11 to 14 and organized by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, attracted more than 7,500 participants from 50 countries and regions. There were 760 exhibitors from 27 countries and regions.

During the event, leading Chinese TV production companies such as Linmon Pictures announced plans for overseas projects, including Under the Skin, a Thai remake of a Chinese series, and the local series The Fairest Lady.

During Filmart Linmon Pictures also showcased the trailer for the Thai remake of its popular drama series Nothing but Thirty.

"I think there will be more coproduced films in the Asian market," Phasit said, noting that there are already Chinese movies starring Thai actors and Singaporean movies filmed in Thailand.

Locman2011 has worked with Chinese partners to produce films such as Thai Flavor and Kuang Zhan, TV series such as The Doll Master, and commercials for Chinese brands, including the dairy company Yili Group and the technology company Huawei.

Before Phasit set up his own company in 2011 he worked with the Matching Studio Public Company, now known as Matching Maximize Solution Public Company, a media producer in Thailand, and has rich experience in working with industry professionals from various countries, China in particular.

"Over the next five years we hope to work with Chinese companies to coproduce works worth no less than 1 billion baht ($27.45 million)," Phasit said.

The production capacity of the Asian film market will further expand and there will be more collaboration between investors and film production houses, he said.

Asia plays an important role in the global film and TV industry, with China being the world's second-biggest box office market and Japan being the third-biggest. India's Bollywood movies have achieved global popularity, and movies from South Korea and Japan have gained international recognition by winning Oscars.

Revenue of the Asia-Pacific video industry is estimated to have reached $145 billion last year, a figure forecast to rise to $165 billion annually by 2028, the consultancy Media Partners Asia said in a report.

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