KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysians will soon get to see the life of badminton ace Datuk Lee Chong Wei unfold on the silver screen.
Filming for the upcoming Lee Chong Wei has been completed, and the movie is set to hit cinemas in the first quarter of 2018.
During a press conference at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel here, Lee said he never thought his life story would be turned into a film.
"I had faith in the director, who had to tell my whole story in two hours.
"I would like to thank my family and everyone who believed in me. And also my sponsors, who have supported me for so long," he said.
Originally known by its working title Rise Of The Legend, the movie is directed by Teng Bee, best known for hit films like Kepong Gangster and Kepong Gangster 2.
"Lee Chong Wei is not just a name, it's the pride of the nation.
"After filming, we felt there was no better title. So, we decided to just call it Lee Chong Wei," said Teng.
The film is a biopic on Lee's life, starting with his early years as an aspiring young badminton player from Penang, and all the way to becoming the No 1 badminton player in the world.
An audition held earlier this year for the lead role of Lee himself drew more than 2,000 aspiring candidates from all over Malaysia, and even from Taiwan.
The role eventually went to 22-year-old newcomer Tosh Chan. Child actor Jake Eng, 13, plays the younger version of the badminton player.
Singaporean actor Mark Lee plays his father Lee Ah Chai, while award-winning Malaysian actress Yeo Yann Yann plays his mother Khor Kim Chooi.
Datuk Rosyam Nor plays Malaysian badminton legend Datuk Misbun Sidek, who used to coach Lee.
The movie also stars Ashley Hua, Freddie Wong, Uriah See, Bernard Hiew and Datuk Norman Pang.
The entire production took three years to complete, and 50 days to film.
Lee Chong Wei is produced by CB Pictures and Mahu Pictures, and distributed by GSC Movies.