John Woo Returning to WWII with The Flying Tiger Heroes
Chinese director John Woo, who decided to remain in China after finishing his two-part epic Red Cliff, is gearing up to start a new project tentatively titled Flying Tiger Heroes. SlashFilm reports that Woo held a press conference in China to announce the new project, which will have a budget of roughly $161 million (although that seems a bit much for a Chinese production). The film will be about The Flying Tigers, known otherwise as The 1st American Volunteer Group, a fighter squadron that flew missions against the Japanese in World War II. Looks like Woo is giving George Lucas and his WWII Red Tails movie a run for its money.
Woo promises that Flying Tiger Heroes will feature "the most spectacular aerial battle scenes ever seen in Chinese cinema." The Flying Tigers destroyed some 300 enemy aircraft while only suffering 14 causalities during the war. The planes the squadron flew were featured the very recognizable shark-teeth design on the nose (seen in the photo above). "This is an extremely important production," Woo explained. "This Yunnan-themed film emphasizes China-US friendship and the contributions of the Flying Tigers and the people of Yunnan during the War of Resistance." The cast will feature a mix of Hollywood and Chinese movie stars.
Either this means that Woo isn't directing that rumored "Romeo and Juliet War Epic" next or that project has been put on the backburner (or was just a rumor to begin with). I'm not the biggest fan of Woo's work in Hollywood, so if he continues to stay in China and make movies there, maybe I'll actually gain some respect for him again. I'm actually looking forward to seeing these upcoming aerial WWII movies, so bring ’em on!