Gordon Chan Replaces Wilson Yip on Painted Skin

Donnie Yen’s big-budget supernatural thriller “Painted Skin” just got itself a new director — Gordon Chan, reports Variety. This is very good news. Replacing Wilson Yip with Chan (“2000 A.D.”, “A-1”) is like replacing McG with Steven Spielberg, talent-wise, with Yip hanging somewhere at the bottom of the totem pole and Chan near the top.

More on the $15 million budgeted film:

The story, about the relationship between humans and a girl from the world of spirits, was adapted from the classic Chinese legends titled STRANGE TALES OF LIAOZHAI, which previously inspired a 1993 Hong Kong film also titled PAINTED SKIN (pictured), directed by veteran King Hu and starring HK faves Adam Cheng, Sammo Hung, Lam Ching-Ying, Joey Wong and Wu Ma.

The new movie will shoot on Chinese locations late this year or in early 2008, depending on the lead actress’ schedule. Heavy CGI postproduction will follow, with completion targeted for the end of next year.

I’m still not sure how Donnie Yen will be able to use his mammoth martial arts skills in a movie about a “relationship” between a human and a ghost girl, but it should be interesting to find out.