Empires Of The Deep is a fantasy film financed by a Chinese billionaire, it's centered around a love story between a man and a Mermaid and the war that rages around them, featuring former Bond girl Olga Kurylenko as the Mermaid, early production on the movie began in 2009, four years later and many directors have come and gone, it has been a very troubled production.
It's said to have cost $130m dollars to make, and they even had a trailer released at one point, unfortunately the CGI was so bad in that trailer that i am having difficulty in understanding where all the money went, it's been called everything from a poor underwater version of Avatar to a live action remake of The Little Mermaid, but unless they can fix the shoddy CGI, it may never be released to western audiences.
I have seen the trailer and still's from Empires Of The Deep, it looks interesting to me, the effects work is poor but if they could fix it then it could at the very least make for a visually interesting movie.
Olga is a talented actress, the screenplay was written by Randall Frakes, who's Randall Frakes, never heard of him i hear you all cry, well he wrote a neat little B movie way back in the eighties called Hell Goes To Frogtown, very enjoyable fun flick that often plays late nights on movie channels which specialise in cult films, other than that film i am not too impressed with his resume of work.
They hired Mark Byers as the producer, his most famous work is Stripped To Kill back in 1987, since then he has done very little movie producing, i cannot understand how they would hire someone who has only worked on small low budget films to be a producer on a $130m dollar film.
Perhaps the billionaire investor wants to control everything and is on a power trip, perhaps he hired these people knowing full well he could push them about, but at what expense, a poorer film for sure, movies like this need people who have a proven track record in the industry, they need to hire WETA digital or Lucasfilm to do the effects work, not some little know company called Emagine Studio's who have a zero track record when it comes to digital effects work in the film business.
I actually doubt they spent all that money, if they did then it's shocking, Emagine Studio's are responsible for the CGI effects work, if this film gets released with the exact same CGI seen in the trailer then this film will be laughed at and it will be lucky to get released on DVD or Blu ray let alone at the local cinema.
The tagline for Empires Of The Deep is When Myth And Legend Collide, The War Of The Abyss Begins, that's a good line, now they need to do something about the dodgy CGI and find a western distributor because as things stand this movie will only be released in China next year and nowhere else in the world, the thing is, many a Hollywood production can look poor until it's completely finished, show a trailer or a scene from a film with half finished effects then you will get bad press.
Hopefully western audiences will be able to judge the film for themselves next year, at the very least we will hear some feedback and reaction from Chinese audiences.