Qingdao Wanda Film Studio

Source: China Film Insider (4/16/18)
Qingdao Wanda Film Studio Opens April 28

After years of preparation, the Wanda Film Metropolis will formally open on April 28. Jason Wei handles marketing for the hotel portion of the project. Nick Zhang is in charge of marketing for the Wanda Studios portion of the project. I met with them last week at the site for a preview of what will be revealed at the opening.

The commercial part of the project includes a large retail mall, three separate amusement parks (theme park, water park, movie theme park, all indoors for year round operation), at least 6 separate hotels, two large exhibition centers, a large marina and a massive number of condos. Nothing except the condos have formally opened for business.

The movie studio project is being conducted under the heading of Wanda Studios Qingdao (青岛万达影视产业园)which operates separately from the commercial portions of the Film Metropolis. You can check out the studio complex on their website at www.wandastudios.com. Continue reading

‘The Possessed’ release delayed

Source: Global Times (4/1/18)
Chinese horror film ‘The Possessed’ delayed for ‘technical reasons’ just four days prior to release
By Huang Tingting

Promotional material for The Possessed Photo: IC

Chinese horror movie The Possessed, a pseudo-documentary that focuses on exorcism culture in the rural areas of Shandong Province, was pulled from this month’s release lineup just days before it was set to hit theaters in China on Wednesday, the film’s studio confirmed on Saturday.

Dubbed “the best Chinese horror movie of the past few years” by some film critics, the low-budget flick from director Ma Ka explores fortune-telling culture and a special exorcism ceremony popular in rural villages throughout the eastern parts of China. The good word around the film made it one of the most anticipated domestic titles coming in April.

The film first captured the attention of the public after it won Best Artistic Exploration at China’s FIRST International Film Festival in 2016. Continue reading

Zurong Dialect Film Fest

Source: Global Times (4/2/18)
Zurong Dialect Film Festival aims to promote productions in local Chinese dialects

The organizers of the Third Zurong Dialect Film Festival [足荣村方言电影节], China’s first movie festival aimed at promoting cinematic works in which a majority of the dialogue is in one of China’s many local dialects, held a press conference in Beijing on Saturday.

While the organizers did not release the location and dates for the festival, they did announce the members of this year’s jury panel and the registration and selection rules for candidate films.

According to the submission rules, any completed production with Chinese subtitles featuring at least one lead role speaking a dialect will be eligible to take part in the festival.

Registration began on Saturday and will end on August 1. Continue reading

Amazon looking to adapt Three-Body Problem

Source: Shanghaiist (3/22/18)
Amazon is looking to turn ‘Three-Body Problem’ into blockbuster sci-fi television series
The company is reportedly likely to earmark $1 billion for project involving the ultra-popular Chinese science fiction trilogy

Chinese sci-fi fans are bubbling over with excitement today following a report that beloved science fiction trilogy “The Three-Body Problem” may be made into a high-budget television series by Amazon.

The Financial Times reported yesterday that the American video subscription service will likely earmark $1 billion in order to acquire the rights to the extremely popular trilogy of novels written by Liu Cixin and produce three seasons of episodes. Continue reading

Taipei lashes out over banning of ‘pro-independence’ actor

Source: SCMP (3/29/18)
Taipei lashes out at Beijing after film with ‘pro-independence’ actor banned
Mainland accused of inconsistency ‘in its words and deeds’ after Missing Johnny screenings barred over claims about its star Lawrence Ko
By Lawrence Chung

Lawrence Ko stars in Missing Johnny, which follows the stories of three young people living in Taipei. Photo: Handout

Taipei has accused Beijing of inconsistency between what it says and does after a Taiwanese film was banned on the mainland amid claims its lead actor Lawrence Ko supports independence for the island.

It comes a month after Beijing introduced a raft of preferential policies for Taiwanese that include more access to the lucrative mainland market for their film, television and books. Continue reading

Golden Broom Awards

Source: Sixth Tone (3/28/18)
The Chinese Film Awards No One Wants to Win
Annual prizes for most disappointing movies aim to improve the country’s film industry, not create a hall of shame, says founder.
By Yin Yijun

Actor Wang Baoqiang holds up his broom-shaped trophy during the ninth Golden Broom Awards in Beijing, March 26, 2018. VCG

At the Golden Broom Awards on Monday, only one winner showed up to collect their trophy.

Such a low turnout would be a serious blow to the Oscars or Golden Globes, but it was a boon for the Golden Broom Awards, which honor China’s least impressive films of the year. Director and actor Wang Baoqiang was only the third winner and first A-lister to attend the ceremony in its nine-year history.

As a smiling Wang claimed his pint-sized, broom-shaped Most Disappointing Director trophy for his directorial debut, “Buddies in India,” he told the audience that while it was hardly the most glorious distinction, it would encourage him to improve. Continue reading

A brief history of women’s filmmaking

Source: WAGIC (3/26/18)
A Brief History of Women’s Film-making in Mainland China
By Lidan Hu

Before the founding of the socialist state in 1949, only one woman director was recorded in Chinese film history: Xie Caizhen, who made her single film, An Orphan’s Cry(Guchu beisheng), in 1925. Unfortunately this film is no longer available to watch. The enforcement of gender equality after 1949 by the CCP ensured women’s participation in the film industry. During the 1950s and 1960s, women directors such as Wang Ping, Wang Shaoyan, Yan Bili and Dong Kena received institutional endorsement from state film studios and contributed reputable films that have been granted the honour of classic works of Chinese cinema: The Story of Liubao(Liubao de gushi, dir. Wang Ping, 1959), The Eternal Wave (Yongbu xiaoshi de dianbo, dir. Wang Ping, 1959), A Grass on Kunlun Mountain (Kunlun shanxia yike cao, dir. Dong Kena, 1958), and others. Continue reading

Survey show Chinese films gain ground in North America

Source: China Daily (3/22/18)
Survey shows Chinese movies gain ground in North America
By Wang Kaihao | China Daily

Huang Huilin, a professor at Beijing Normal University and an initiator of the survey on the global influence of Chinese cinema, speaks at the annual event. [Photo provided to China Daily]

North America is increasingly taking to Chinese movies, but kung fu films–which were once popular–are now losing ground, says a report recently released by Beijing Normal University.

According to the report, which is based on 1,520 responses in the United States and Canada, the interviewees were least interested in upcoming Chinese kung fu movies. Continue reading

Best Chinese-language movies of 2017

Source: China Film Insider (3/14/18)
The 10 Best Chinese Language Movies of 2017 (China, Hong Kong, Taiwan)

The Great Buddha

2017 has been a very interesting year for the Chinese-speaking world (allow me not to dwell on the politics of the matter). The collaborations between China and Hong Kong have resulted in a number of blockbusters, Chinese filmmakers continue to produce unique (original if you prefer) films, Hong Kong is trying to reinstate its former status with the help of governmental initiatives, while Taiwan keeps producing masterpieces of all genres. Continue reading

Black Panther in China

Posted by maghiel van crevel <M.van.Crevel@hum.leidenuniv.nl>
Source: The Outline (3/11/18)
In China, ‘Black Panther’ is a movie about America
To a country with minimal sensitivity to racism and a fascination with national identity, the Marvel blockbuster is seen as a love letter to American values.
By Eileen Guo

A Black Panther display.

A Black Panther display. Sarunyu L / Shutterstock.com

To understand where race relations in China are right now, one needs only to look to the highest grossing Chinese film of all time, last year’s Wolf Warrior 2. Directed by its star, Wu Jing, the ultra-patriotic action blockbuster was China’s answer to the thinly veiled military propaganda of Hollywood films like Rambo or Zero Dark Thirty, grossing $854 million and becoming China’s 2018 submission for Best Foreign Film at the Oscars (sadly, it wasn’t nominated). Unfortunately, it also mirrored the American blockbuster’s tendency to lean into unflattering foreign stereotypes, portraying Africans alternatively as unscrupulous enemies or weak, faceless hordes awaiting salvation. Continue reading

Chinese Metacinema

I am happy to announce the publication of my book, Metacinema in Contemporary Chinese Film. The book will be on display at the upcoming SCMS (with the North American distributor, Columbia UP) and AAS conferences. See information below.

Andrew Stuckey <andrew.stuckey@colorado.edu>

“Stuckey surveys a broad swath of contemporary Chinese cinema, from popular blockbusters to elite art films, around the theme of metacinema, yielding new insights into both previously neglected films and those already acknowledged as contemporary classics. The result is a fascinating dive into the growing and diversifying cinema culture of China today.” —Jason McGrath, University of Minnesota

“Stuckey’s brilliant work, Metacinema in Contemporary Chinese Film, offers insightful close analyses of films by key directors from the PRC (Jiang Wen, Lou Ye, Jia Zhangke, and Li Yu), Hong Kong (Peter Chan), and Taiwan (Tsai Mingliang). This clearly written book is essential reading for scholars and students of Chinese cinemas. Stuckey’s study of genre and metacinema makes it a must-read for anyone interested in cinema.” —Michelle Bloom, University of California, Riverside Continue reading

Amazing China

For artist Hua Yong’s take on this “documentary,” see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=295vet1u06Y&feature=youtu.be –Kirk

Source: China Daily (2/28/18)
Film shows how amazing China is
By Wang Kaihao

Chinese filmgoers have a chance to gain a comprehensive understanding of their country’s strengths from a documentary that premiered on Tuesday in Beijing.

Amazing China [厉害了,我的国], which reflects the social prosperity and improvements in people’s livelihoods during the past five years, was coproduced by China Central Television and China Film Corp.

The 90-minute film will be publicly screened nationwide on March 2. Continue reading

Zhang Yimou: Globalization and the Subject of Culture review

MCLC and MCLC Resource Center are pleased to announce publication of Chris Berry’s review of Zhang Yimou: Globalization and the Subject of Culture (Cambria 2017), by Wendy Larson. The review appears below, but is best read at its online home here: http://u.osu.edu/mclc/book-reviews/chris-berry/. My thanks to MCLC media studies book review editor, Jason McGrath, for ushering the review to publication.

Kirk A. Denton, editor

Zhang Yimou: 
Globalization and the Subject of Culture

By Wendy Larson

Reviewed by Chris Berry
MCLC Resource Center Publication (Copyright March, 2018)

Wendy Larson. Zhang Yimou: Globalization and the Subject of Culture Amherst, NY: Cambria Press, 2017. xv, 420pp. ISBN: 9781604979756 (Hardback).

In Zhang Yimou: Globalization and the Subject of Culture, Wendy Larson asks us to take Zhang Yimou 张艺谋 seriously again. This is a very welcome intervention. Few Chinese film directors seem to have been more widely—and diversely—reviled than Zhang. As Larson nimbly lays out in her introductory chapter, he was first attacked for alleged self-orientalism in pursuit of foreign film festival awards in the early 1990s. Then, his martial arts megahit Hero (英雄, 2002) was condemned for promoting “fascist” submission to authoritarianism. Worst of all, his more recent films, such as the Matt Damon vehicle The Great Wall (长城, 2016), have been ridiculed and dismissed. Nevertheless, Zhang remains China’s only director with a global reputation beyond the festival scene, and the only one with enough clout to put together a project like The Great Wall. Even though many of us might be more comfortable with festival favorites like Jia Zhangke 贾樟柯, we should not ignore directors with wider impact like Zhang Yimou, Feng Xiaogang 冯小刚, and the host of younger genre filmmakers that have emerged as the industry has boomed in the People’s Republic. Continue reading

Yan Ruisheng remake?

I am doing a PhD and am trying to locate the film below:

Country: Hong Kong
Language: Cantonese
Genre: Drama
Release Date: 08/31/1938
Producer: Moon Kwan Man-Ching
Production Company: Shanyue or Nickname (Paramountain) Production Company

Thank you

Joy Mc Grath <joyemcgrath@yahoo.com.au>

Wolf Warrior II: The Rise of China and Gender/Sexuality Politics

MCLC Resource Center is pleased to announce publication of “Wolf Warrior II: The Rise of China and Gender/Sexual Politics,” a compilation of short essays on the film Wolf Warrior II edited by Petrus Liu and Lisa Rofel. The essays appear below, but are best read online at: http://u.osu.edu/mclc/online-series/liu-rofel/.

Kirk Denton, MCLC editor

Wolf Warrior II:
The Rise of China and Gender/Sexual Politics

Compiled and edited by Petrus Liu and Lisa Rofel

Petrus Liu | Zairong Xiang | Lisa Rofel | María Viteri | Aisha Udochi | Yiping Cai | Paul Amar | Chih-ming Wang

MCLC Resource Center Publication (Copyright February 2018)

Petrus Liu and Lisa Rofel

This collection of essays originates from an international workshop called “China in the Global South: The Central Role of Gender and Sexuality,” convened by Lisa Rofel (UC Santa Cruz) and Huang Yingying (Renmin University of China) and held in Beijing from September 15 to 17, 2017. It continued a conversation that began with the first workshop on the same theme, held a year ago in Santa Cruz, that brought together a group of scholars, activists, and NGO workers to reflect on the impact of China’s rise on other countries in the Global South. With the country’s national “going out” policy (中国走出去), China has become the largest South-South cooperation provider, with investment in Latin America, Africa, and Central and Eastern Europe. While China’s interactions with the Global South have been the subject of much attention and study, the issues of gender and sexuality have been largely ignored. The workshop asked experts from China, Africa, Latin America, and the US working on security, migration, environmental, economic, and social issues to collectively think about the role of gender and sexuality in China’s relationships with the Global South Collectively, the workshop brought together experts from China, Africa, Latin America, and the US who work on gender and sexuality, as well as on security, migration, environmental, economic, and social issues, to collectively think about the role of gender and sexuality in China’s relationships with the Global South. Continue reading