Canadian action pic lands Jean-Claude Van Damme as lead

Ernie Barbarash will direct Pound of Flesh, from Ace Studio and Odyssey Media, on location in China in March 2014.

Jean-Claude Van Damme is to star in a Canadian action film set to shoot on location in China in March 2014.

The Hollywood actor has signed up to play Deacon Lyle, a former soldier who rescues a young woman one night, only to wake up the next morning in a blood-soaked hotel bathtub in Asia, with stitches where a kidney he was to donate to a dying niece used to be.

Ernie Barbarash will direct Pound of Flesh from a script by Joshua James.

Ace Studio and Odyssey Media are producing, with camera and veteran fight choreographer John Salvitti also on board.

Van Damme in a statement said Pound of Flesh is “exactly the kind of character-driven action thriller I and my fans love best – a movie that delivers nonstop hardcore action that’s fueled by a really surprising story and real people you care about from the moment you meet them on screen.”

Automatic Entertainment will handle international sales.

Jean-Claude Van Damme photo courtesy of Shutterstock