Taiwan actor Chang Chen reprises his role of the warrior Shen Lian in the upcoming martial arts film Brotherhood of Blades II.
Viewed as a ground-breaking exploration to revive the struggling martial arts movie genre, the 2014 hitBrotherhood of Bladeswill see a second installment screened this summer.
Brotherhood of Blades II, somewhat a prequel of the first movie, unfolds the bloody but thrilling experiences of Shen Lian, a low-ranking warrior in the 17th-century Ming court's Imperial Assassins, a royal secret police organization.
Taiwan actor Chang Chen reprises his role of Shen in the new movie, but the other major characters are all new, such as rising actress Yang Mi starring a mysterious painter.
Lu Yang, the director of the franchise, reveals the new movie's costumes and weapon props are still based on the real objects in the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644).
He says the blade props used by actors are inspired by the swords forged for the legendary troops led by Ming court general Qi Jiguang.
Award-winning actor Chang says the new script is a deeper exploration of humanity, and will relive the turbulence of royal conspiracies.
The movie will open across China on Aug 11.