Daily News-June 19th
Chinese producer makes movie deal with Indian network
By Joyce Xu(Shanghai Daily)
Chinese company Extraordinary Entertainment announced a collaboration with India’s B4U network to co-produce three movies yesterday at the ongoing 21st Shanghai International Film Festival.
The slate of movies will include the action film “Operation Wild”directed by Renny Harlin, known for "Skiptrace."
The film will co- star leading Indian and Chinese actors. While plot details are being kept under wraps, the film is described as a large- scale action adventure story.
It involves two elite combat warriors from China and India leading covert forces to shut down a criminal global wildlife poaching organization.
The collaboration follows an impressive run of Indian films in the Chinese box office in recent years, including“Dangal,”which made $200 million, and "Secret Superstar," topping the imported movies box office with over $118 million.
"There is an incredible opportunity now to develop significant co-productions between China and India, and to exponentially increase the number of Indian films distributed in Chinese theaters,”said Extraordinary Entertainment’s CEO, Daljit DJ Parmar.
“The enormous success of co- produced films like‘Kung Fu Yoga’and other Indian films has helped pave the way for Indian content in China,” he added.
The group photo of Indian guests. Pic by Tigong
Understanding audiences a key to film success, forum told
By Cathy Ding(Shanghai Daily)
Industry experts and consultants discussed how effective communications can advance China's film industry during a workshop on June 18 at the ongoing 21st Shanghai International Film Festival.
Forum discussions centered on the embrace of digital media by movie lovers and audiences in their choices of which films to watch.
Chen Qin, economist and research fellow at Fudan University's School of Economics, used solid data to show that film reviews now have a greater impact on box office performance, especially during opening weekends, compared to one or two years ago.
Lisa Liu, head of Beijing- based market research agency Fanink's research center, said that while audiences in first tier cities are strong, those in fourth and fifth tier cities have been quickly catching up in the past three years.
In 2017, she said, as many as 57 percent of urban residents visited cinemas at least once in a year, and the number of movie goers aged between 40 to 49 rose to 24 percent from 15 percent a year ago.
However, young audiences aged between 18 and 29 still make up the core movie goer group, contributing about 39 percent of the audience population and as much as 49 percent of box office.
Kevin Yoder, an independent consultant, strategist and former executive vice- president of marketing research and strategy at 20th Century Fox, said today's consumers are already in charge in terms of what they want to see and when they want to see it.
He said that when it comes to the marketing and promotion of a new film, it's important to engage audiences with unique, creative and original information.
Jerry Ye, general manager of Huayi Brothers Pictures, pointed out the best films always speak for themselves. But when consumers have a wide range of films to choose from, effective and targeted film distribution and marketing, and concise information, plays a major part in attracting them.
Chinese film director and producer Zhang Yibai also noted that films differ from other merchandise in that there's a human element, despite the film genre. Therefore, during the entire production process, as well as marketing and distribution, producers need to ensure there's emotional power that can touch the hearts of film fans.
The foreign guest of the forum. Pic by Tigong
The guests were sharing their view in the forum. Pic by Tigong
Emerging movie talents share their career lessons
By Liza Li(Shanghai Daily)
China’s rising creative talents shared their career development experiences during an emerging filmmakers' panel at yesterday's ongoing 21st Shanghai International Film Festival.
They also discussed the making of films that can resonate with audiences..
Director and screenwriter Su Lun, whose first film “How Long Will I Love You”achieved more than 800 million yuan at the box office, explained that being persistent was important.
“The conditions for young directors are very good now, but we are always wanting more and better," said Su. "Being able to create and expand the framework is also an aspect of growth for directors."
Su said project pitch programs also allow young filmmakers to showcase their creative works and connect with producers and investors.
“Creativity is also important. Young talents are expected to bring something new and fresh to the industry, rather than repeating what’s already there,”she added.
Wei Shujun, director of“On the Border,”said participating in film festivals was a way for young directors to gain entry into the industry.
“But I’m not sure that participating in too many project pitches is meaningful for creativity," he said.
"A person who can make good presentations may not be able to shoot a good film. Some people with excellent screenplays are not talkative and they could be disadvantaged,” said Wei.
You Xiaoying, screenwriter of“Love Education,” noted the project pitch was a good platform for young people, especially those lacking a professional or education background in the industry. But the project's quality was still what determined its future development.
“Young writers must be persistent to overcome the difficulties," You said. "Good projects may not come to you in the beginning, but if you have an excellent original story or screenplay, there’s an opportunity to be recognized.”
Yin Fang, an actor in“Operation Red Sea,”said he chooses projects based on a sincere creative attitude, as well as the director’s talent, the screenplay and the characters.
“There's more freedom working with young directors, we can have smoother communication,”he said.
The scene of the forum. Pic by CFP
Premiere openings for Peking Opera film and new comedy
By Joyce Xu(Shanghai Daily)
The 3D Peking Opera film "Cao Cao and Yang Xiu" and the much- anticipated comedy film "Dying to Survive" were premiered yesterday at Shanghai Film Art Center.
The two movies are also among the several hundred films selected for public screening at the Film Panorama of the ongoing 21st Shanghai International Film Festival.
"Cao Cao and Yang Xiu," starring Peking Opera artists Shang Changrong and Yan Xingpeng, is based on the classic opera story of the same name. It centers on the delicate relationship between warlord Cao Cao and his advisor Yang Xiu.
Since its debut in 1988, the Peking Opera stage production has impressed generations of enthusiasts of the performance genre.
The 3D film, shot with 4K cameras, presents visually compelling battle scenes from the Three Kingdoms. It also depicts the complexity of humanity. The film is expected to be nationally released in September.
"Dying to Survive" will start its national release on July 6.
Directed by young filmmaker Wen Muye, it is a story about the adventures of a health care products merchant.
Producer Xu Zheng, also a well- known Chinese actor, plays the leading role of a small potato in the movie.
The group photo of creator in chief of "Cao Cao and Yang Xiu." Pic by Tigong