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04/04/2016

Farewell but not goodbye: Golden Panda filmmakers head home to future creation and exchange

All good things must end: on April 4, delegates of the 2016 Golden Panda International Filmmakers Cultural Immersion Trip flew back to their respective homes in a flurry of hugs and handshakes, leaving promises to stay friends forever and to come back as soon as they can.

 

Golden Panda filmmakers prepared to depart

Golden Panda filmmakers prepared to depart 

 

From new screenplays and ideas for new study abroad programs, the delegates also took with a feeling of renewed inspiration and the energy to continue creating and pursuing cultural exchange.

 

“I came up with an idea for a short film based on the culture clashes between a foreigner and a Chinese girl,” said Gabriel Furman of the USA, writer and lead actor of the Special Jury Award-winning film “Mother’s Day” at the 2015 Golden Panda North America International Short Film Festival. “[This trip] sparked quite an interest in me and I think it would make a beautiful story.”

 

Golden Panda filmmakers participate in a Q&A at Beijing Film Academy

Golden Panda filmmakers participate in a Q&A at Beijing Film Academy

 

Christopher Lane of Canada, 2015 Golden Panda Festival judge and coordinator of the Toronto Film School film production program, said that as soon as he went back to Toronto, he would work on getting his school to set up a student exchange program with the Beijing Film Academy.

 

“I made some inroads [at the BFA] and I explained to them how much I would like to send my students there and accept their students to Toronto,” Lane said. “They have really beautiful facilities and they just offer so much in every way, beautiful recording studios, beautiful sound studios beautiful sound stages, [it’s] such a well put together well thought-out school, and it must be a real honour to attend here.”

 

“Mother’s Day” director Jeff Tan of the USA agreed that learning about the resources available to Chinese filmmakers was a highlight of the trip.

 

“I was amazed at how much space there was [at the BFA] and how many resources [the students] were able to use for their own projects. Studying in New York, we have maybe about half the resources and maybe not the newest technologies since there are always problems with budget and keeping up with the technologies,” Tan said.

 

Most delegates felt that another highlight of their experience was the people they got to meet and exchange cultures with: strangers they came across in China, Chinese filmmakers and film students, as well as one another as fellow filmmakers.

 

Lane said he was “literally clowning with strangers” in China every day, while model and actress Alexandria Kayy of Canada was struck by “how friendly everyone was.”

 

Director Wang Yimin of China, whose film “Offspring of Mount Tianshan” won the award for Most Popular Film for Online Voting, has already started sharing his plan for future collaboration with Lane and artist Iris Moore of Canada, whose film “Seeker Wing” won the Best Animated Film Award, with the help of the “translate” function on Chinese mobile messaging platform WeChat.

 

Finally, the Golden Panda delegates were grateful for the chance to experience through the trip the ancient and modern sides of Chinese civilization, as well as the way Chinese people continue to live their lives amidst these complex transformations.

 

“I didn’t know that people were as happy as I found them to be. It was nice to wander around the hutongs and see how normal people live,” said director Dara Kell of South Africa, whose documentary “The Fighter” won the Best Humanistic Vision Award. “It was also inspiring to see how great works of the Great Wall of China were built so long ago.”

 

The Golden Panda delegation made a Thousand-Arm Bodhisattva pose at the Forbidden City

The Golden Panda delegation made a Thousand-Arm Bodhisattva pose at the Forbidden City

 

Delegates paid a visit to the Ancient Culture Street

Delegates paid a visit to the Ancient Culture Street

 

On the other hand, “I’ve been watching CCTV every day in the hotel, and they do this big wrap-up on weather and showed pictures of city after city, there must two dozen on there and every one of them had huge skyscrapers,” Lane said. “And I had no idea we were in a place so developed, and to think it was developed in the last thirty years? Way to go!”

 

Delegates took a group photo in front of the high speed railway

Delegates took a group photo in front of the high speed railway

 

Many filmmakers are their gratitude for the Golden Panda experience and renewed inspiration for filmmaking home to prepare to submit to upcoming 2016 Golden Panda Festival and connect with Golden Panda for future projects and collaborations with one another.

 

“I think this trip is connecting me again to what I love about the filmmaking world and craft,” Kell said. “Just being around people who have so many different talents and talk about filmmaking is a real treat.”

 

Members of Golden Panda International Filmmaker Cultural Immersion Trip took a group photo in Beijing Capital International Airport

Members of Golden Panda International Filmmaker Cultural Immersion Trip took a group photo in Beijing Capital International Airport



    Editor:Albert | Source: CNTVNA


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