(Hollywood, California--August 24, 2011) Genson Entertainment, helmed by veteran producer Bob Larson ("Coal Miner's Daughter", "Continental Divide", "Gorky Park", "Play Misty For Me") announced today it has entered into a partnership with Identity Studios to begin production on Chennault, the maverick story of General Claire Lee Chennault's Flying Tigers in China during World War II.
The two companies are currently in high-level talks with several industry icons for their participation in the film, from legendary directors to A-List talent, and expect to reach additional agreements in the coming weeks.
The partnership has taken up the torch first ignited sixty plus years ago when General Chennault accepted the daunting task of defending half a billion Chinese from the invading Japanese Air Force. General Chennault died in 1958, but not before collaborating with his fellow China Campaign Veteran, Captain J. Gen Genovese (Gen Genson) on his Flying Tigers' screenplay. Genson promised General Chennault that he would do everything in his power to bring the General's true story to the big screen. Just prior to his death in 2010, at the age of 99, Genson transferred that promise to his longtime friend Bob Larson. "Identity Studios brings a wealth of talent to the project on both the creative and technical sides" says Larson. "General Chennault was a courageous and honorable man, who never wavered from his ideals, and I can think of no team better equipped to help tell his story."
Identity, a Digital Production Studio based in North Hollywood and led by Producer Alison Savitch, Stereoscopic Supervisor Leo Vezzali, and Writer/Producer David Scott Van Woert, is most-recently known for its role as a stereoscopic conversion provider on Namia: The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, Green Lantern, and Conan the Barbarian. The studio opened its doors in 2004 as a visual effects shop and has since garnered more than 80 vfx, title design, and stereoscopic credits.
As a period aviation epic and an account of actual events, Chennault will require strict attention to historical detail. Identity will be taking on the task of bringing to life the vintage aircraft and historic locales necessary for the authenticity of the film. "We feel uniquely positioned to help bring the real story of Chennault to the big screen," says Alison Savitch, longtime Chair of the Producers Guild of America New Media Council. "Our team combines expertise in visual effects, stereoscopic production, and trans-media exposure with a strong sense of storytelling and a passion for World War II aviation."
Legendary reporter Walter Winchell once wrote in his New York column, "General Chennault's place in history is beyond anyone's power to add or subtract." In fact, the Flying Tigers brought about what is widely considered by military historians to be nothing short of a miracle. Utilizing their many years of experience as combat pilots, General Chennault and his fellow Flying Tigers successfully drove the much larger and better equipped Japanese Air Force out of South East Asia, shooting down ten Japanese planes for every one American plane lost. Larson adds, "Chennault himself has tasked us with the telling of an epic tale of adventure, love, and war - a tale that he not only collaborated on, but personally acted out across the vast stage of World War II in China. We are honored that we have been entrusted with this story and excited by the possibilities our new partnership with Identity Studios brings."