Hong Kong's Stephen Chow (Shaolin Soccer) will direct, produce and star in the science-fiction comedy Yangtze River 7, according to Variety.

The film will start shooting this month in the Chinese city of Ningbo for release in mid-2007.

The movie title -- and the inspiration for the plot -- came from China's Shenzhou 6 space mission last year.

Among the backers are China Film Group, Chow's Star Overseas group, Guangdong Zoke Culture Development, Beijing Chunqiuhong Culture Investment and Beijing PolyBona Film Distribution.