TURNER GREENLIGHTS ‘TUZKI’ MOVIE IN PARTNERSHIP WITH TENCENT PICTURES
Monday, September 19, 2016
- The famous rabbit emoticon celebrates 10th anniversary with theatrical film release -
BEIJING, CHINA (September 19, 2016) – Turner Asia Pacific and Shanghai Tencent Pictures Culture Media Co., Ltd. (Tencent Pictures) have agreed to develop a film starring Tuzki, the famous rabbit emoticon used every day by millions. In a MOU, production of the feature-length movie, which will fuse CGI and live-action content, is expected to begin in 2017, with a likely China release in 2018.
This will be the first full-length movie project for Turner-owned Tuzki, who is currently celebrating his 10th anniversary. Created by Momo Wang in 2006, Tuzki is best known on social media platforms and instant communication apps, but has appeared in short animated projects before.
Clément Schwebig, Turner’s SVP of Business Development, Licensing & China, said: “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. 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.”
Tencent Pictures will be responsible for leading the film’s production and distribution. Turner will be supporting through its 360-degree licensing efforts with consumer products, live experiences and family entertainment centres.
Tencent Pictures mentioned: “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.”
This announcement caps a busy few months for Tuzki. In April, a Tuzki-branded restaurant opened in Shanghai and he also made a big splash at the Beijing Comic Con in June. Finally, “The World of Tuzki: Summer Sports Gala” – a sports-themed exhibition – recently opened at the Galaxy Macau.
For further information, contact:
James Moore, Director of Communications, Turner Asia Pacific
+852 3128-3720 / James.Moore@turner.com
Mason Xu, Tencent
Tel: +86 181-2381-2920 / email@example.com
Tuzki is a cartoon rabbit image created by Momo Wang in 2006. Outlined in black and white, this rabbit is a youth-oriented character made famous by his expressive and amusing body gestures. The Tuzki emoji package is widely used by young adults across various online platforms such as instant communication software, social media and blogs. There are 20 million daily transmissions on global social media platforms, with more than 5 billion downloads on WeChat. Tuzki is a Turner-owned IP.
About Turner Asia Pacific
Turner Asia Pacific creates and distributes award-winning brands throughout the region, running 63 channels in 14 languages in 37 countries. These include CNN International, CNNj, CNN, HLN, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Boomerang, POGO, Toonami, World Heritage Channel, Warner TV, Oh!K, TCM Turner Classic Movies, truTV, MondoTV, TABI Channel, and HBO and WB in South Asia. Turner manages the business of Pay- and Free-TV-channels, as well as Internet-based services, and oversees commercial partnerships with various third-party media ventures; it teams with Warner Bros. and HBO to leverage Time Warner’s global reach. Turner Broadcasting System Asia Pacific, Inc. (“Turner Asia Pacific”) is a Time Warner company.
Founded in November, 1998, Tencent is a leading provider of Internet value added services in China. Since its establishment over the last decade, Tencent has maintained steady growth under its user-oriented operating strategies. On June 16, 2004, Tencent Holdings Limited (SEHK 700) went public on the main board of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
It is Tencent's mission to enhance the quality of human life through Internet services. Presently, Tencent provides social platforms and digital content services under the “Connection” Strategy. Tencent’s leading Internet platforms in China – QQ (QQ Instant Messenger), Weixin/WeChat, QQ.com, QQ Games, Qzone, and Tenpay – have brought together China's largest Internet community, to meet the various needs of Internet users including communication, information, entertainment, financial services and others. As of June 31, 2016, the monthly active user accounts of QQ was 899 million while its peak concurrent user accounts reached 247 million. Combined MAU of Weixin and WeChat was 806 million. The development of Tencent has profoundly influenced the ways hundreds of millions of Internet users communicate with one another as well as their lifestyles. It also brings possibilities of a wider range of applications to the China’s Internet industry.
Looking forward, Tencent remains committed to enhancing its development and innovation capabilities while strengthening its nationwide branding for its long term development. More than 50% of Tencent employees are R&D staff. Tencent has obtained patents relating to the technologies in various areas: instant messaging, e-commerce, online payment services, search engine, information security, gaming, and many more. In 2007, Tencent invested more than RMB100 million in setting up the Tencent Research Institute, China's first Internet research institute, with campuses in Beijing, Shanghai, and Shenzhen. The institute focuses on the self-development of core Internet technologies, in pursuing its development and innovation for the industry.
Tencent's long term vision is to become the most respected Internet enterprise. In order to fulfill corporate social responsibilities and to promote civil Internet communities, Tencent has been actively participating in public charity programs. In 2006, Tencent inaugurated the Tencent Charity Fund, the first charity foundation set up by a Chinese Internet enterprise, and the public charity website gongyi.qq.com. The website focuses on youth education, assisting impoverished communities, care for the disadvantaged, and disaster relief. Tencent has currently begun a number of public charity projects across China. It strives to help build a harmonious society and to become a good corporate citizen.