Bait 2 morphs into Deep Water
The follow-up to the shark-in-a-flooded -supermarket saga previously known as Bait 2 has been retitled Deep Water.
The switch signals this is a stand-alone horror movie, not a sequel, with killer sharks as the common element, according to the producer, Arclight Films' Gary Hamilton.
Screen Australia is funding the development of the project which is being scripted by Shayne Armstrong and Shane Krause, who were among the writing team on the original.
The plot revolves around a flight from Beijing to Sydney which crashes in the Pacific, pitting an air marshal and a small group of survivors against huge tiger sharks.
The first film, shot in 3D, cost $20 million and earned more than $40 million at cinemas worldwide, including $27 million in China. Hamilton said Screen Australia will see a return on its investment in that film.
The follow-up will be budgeted at more than $25 million with a larger CGI component, said Hamilton, who is negotiating with prospective Chinese co-production partners. He's in the process of lining up a director and said he is developing another project with Kimble Rendall, who directed Bait.
Armstrong and Krause are polishing the script, which must be submitted to the Chinese censors for approval. Michael Wrenn, who runs Greenlight Releasing in Australia, is attached as executive producer. Hamilton hopes to start shooting in April.
Armstrong and Krause wrote the animated telemovie Johnny Bravo Goes to Bollywood and Jon Hewitt's Acolytes, a 2008 serial killer thriller that starred Joel Edgerton and Michael Dorman.