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Upcoming $80 million ‘Tetris’ movie will be the first chapter in a trilogy

Remember that Tetris movie announced a few years ago that generated all kinds of discussion about video-game adaptations before it sort of disappeared? Well, it’s back in the news again — and cameras are expected to begin rolling on the first film in what is now a planned trilogy next year.

Chinese media executive Bruno Wu and producer Larry Kasanoff (True LiesMortal Kombat) have announced plans to begin production on an $80 million movie that will be based on the hit puzzle game next year, with filming expected to take place in China. Described as an “epic sci-fi thriller,” the motion picture will be a co-production of studios in China and the U.S. and feature an ensemble cast drawn from both countries.

Related: Ecstasy of Order: The Tetris Masters director talks building blocks and the rise of gaming

At the moment, plot details are scarce, but the Tetris movie will be the first project from the newly created Threshold Global Studios — a joint venture initiated by Kasanoff and Wu that’s intended to develop and finance film projects for the worldwide market.

Calling it a “big science-fiction movie,” Kasanoff told Empire that the film is intended to be the first installment of a trilogy.

“[That’s] purely because the story we conceived is so big,” he explained. “This isn’t us splitting the last one of our eight movies in two to wring blood out of the stone. It’s just a big story.”

The announcement indicates that Threshold has already secured financing and developed a story for the film, and is now in search of a distributor. Deadpool and The Hunger Games visual-effects producer Dane Smith will reportedly oversee the VFX component of the film, which — as should come as no surprise — is expected to be a major element in the movie.

“We’re not going to have blocks with feet running around the movie,” teased Kasanoff, “but it’s great that people think so. It sets the bar rather low!”

Updated 6-28-2016: This article was updated to include comments from Kasanoff about the film being the first chapter of a trilogy and the general tone of the film.