Turner Asia Pacific and Shanghai Tencent Pictures Culture Media Co have agreed to develop a film starring Tuzki, the rabbit emoticon.
The film will fuse CGI and live-action content and production is expected to begin in 2017, with a likely China release in 2018.
Created by Momo Wang in 2006, Tuzki is best known on social media platforms and instant communication apps.
“This announcement is a huge milestone as we look to grow the Tuzki franchise and reinforces Turner’s commitment to its growing business in China," said Clément Schwebig, Turner’s SVP of business development, licensing and China," said Clément Schwebig, Turner’s SVP of Business Development, Licensing & China, said:
"Turner’s dedicated team in Shanghai is really pleased to be working with Tencent Pictures on this project, who themselves are leaders in developing digital IP. Through WeChat, Tencent is obviously very familiar with Tuzki, and everyone is excited to see him appear on the big screen. This irrepressible rabbit has already made a strong emotional connection with a generation of young Chinese, and this film will take engagement to the next level.”
A statement from Tencent Pictures added: “For 10 years, millions of young adults in China have used Tuzki’s unique expressions to communicate their feelings with their friends. Now, they can experience Tuzki’s story in what promises to be a remarkable story of adventure and excitement. We’re looking forward to partnering with Turner to create a film starring a timeless and eminently marketable IP.”