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NBA Sees Lights, Camera, Action In Alliance With China's Shanghai Film Group

August 25, 2010: The NBA continues to expand its position in China, unveiling a deal with the Shanghai Film Group to produce the first NBA-themed motion picture outside of North America.  

SFG becomes the first official movie partner of the NBA in China. Terms of the multiyear partnership were not disclosed.

In partnering with a U.S. sports league for the first time, SFG will help to "expand the NBA’s significant global reach and popularity in China and further cement SFG’s status as one of the largest film production companies in China," according to the NBA. SFG owns 640 feature films and is the largest cinema chain in China, according to the company.

The film, Amazing, will feature such NBA stars as Carmelo Anthony and Dwight Howard, American actor Eric Mabius (Ugly Betty) and top actors from Asia. Filming began earlier this month and will continue in Beijing, Shanghai and New York through November. The movie is scheduled to premiere in the summer of 2011, according to the NBA.

The title plays off the the NBA marketing mantra, "Where amazing happens."

Amazing was described as a basketball-themed movie about "young people achieving their dreams through hard work." Other films that have included either pro basketball themes or NBA players include Spike Lee's He Got Game (1998 with Denzel Washington and Ray Allen), Love & Basketball (2000), Semi-Pro (2008 with Will Ferrell), Space Jam (1996 with Michael Jordan and Forget Paris (1996 with Billy Crystal).

The NBA opened its Hong Kong office in 1992 and currently employs close to 150 people in four offices in Greater China. NBA products are available in 30,000 retail locations in addition to NBA.com/China. Several China athletic and sportswear apparel companies has signed deals with NBA players, including Li-Ning (Evan Turner, Shaquille O'Neal and Baron Davis), Anta (Kevin Garnett) and Peak (Jason Kidd).

SFG, a subsidiary of Shanghai Media & Entertainment Group engages in the production, distribution and screening of feature films, animated movies and cartoons, as well as TV commercials and documentaries.

China Keeps Calling, NBA Keeps Answering

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