May 19th 2022 Cannes. Paris-based producer and distributor Oble announces the development of the very first biopic series on Jack Ma. Jack Magic, (w/t) relating the life of the enigmatic Asian entrepreneur billionaire, innovator, investor and philanthropist, who created the world’s largest online marketplace, Alibaba, and became the symbol of China’s dynamic new economy – and then a target for a nervous government determined to keep control.
“Jack Magic” is based on Alibaba insider Duncan Clark’s acclaimed best-selling book “Alibaba: The House that Jack Ma Built”. This definite work charts Ma’s epic rise from modest English teacher to wildly successful corporate titan, a Rockefeller for the new age who personified China’s booming economy and Internet market. Jack and his team in 2014 oversaw the largest global flotation in history ($25 billion) on the New York Stock Exchange. Until his dramatic run-in with an increasingly authoritarian Chinese government in late 2020, he was considered one of the richest men in China, if not the world. Ma has often been compared to entrepreneurial icons such as Steve Jobs or Jeff Bezos, but his path from obscurity to global icon is as surprising as it is unlikely, a true rags to riches story, an American Dream but made in China.
Oble is working closely with Ma’s biographer Clark who is providing on-going advice and insights. As an early player in the Chinese market, former advisor on Alibaba’s international strategy, he is the best mentor to have for such a project.
Hugo Brisbois, co-founder of Oble, said, ‘Jack Ma’s life-story is fascinating but not well known in the West. He’s an unlikely business hero who was among the very first in China to understand the potential of the internet and who against all the odds was able to harness it, navigating regulations and beating Silicon Valley giants to build a home-grown champion. With this series we wish to celebrate the innovative mind of a passionate man with whom we, as a young ambitious team, identify closely.
Duncan Clark says, ‘The story of Jack Ma, and his impact on the world is compelling on many levels. From his remarkable life story and what it tells us about a rapidly changing China to his lasting imprint on China’s economy and culture, Ma has in recent years become a victim of his own success, his firm targeted by a government keen to reassert its authority. Jack Ma has served as an inspiration to entrepreneurs and investors far beyond China’s shores, yet his story isn’t well known by the wider public. I’m delighted to work with Oble whose track record of bringing together diverse cultures while ensuring high standards in the international dramas it produces means we have all the ingredients to bring this remarkable story to life and captivate audiences around the world.
Related article: Variety