“European audiovisual talents are extremely professional and have a very solid artistic foundation”
Industry Report: Europe and the Rest of the World
Li Xinran • Partner and producer, Lian Ray Pictures
Bridging the Dragon chatted to Li Xinran, partner and producer at Lian Ray Pictures, the leading Chinese industry conglomerate behind a raft of commercial blockbusters
At its 6th Sino-European Project Lab, Bridging the Dragon caught up with Li Xinran, partner and producer at Lian Ray Pictures, the leading Chinese industry conglomerate behind a raft of commercial blockbusters.
Through Bridging the Dragon, you recently acquired the remake rights for Matteo Rovere’s Italian Race [+see also:
interview: Matilda De Angelis
interview: Matteo Rovere
film profile]. Why do you think it can be turned into a Chinese film? What was the most appealing element for you?
Li Xinran: What attracted me most in Italian Race are the emotions between the brother and the sister. That is to say, emotion is our first criterion of judgement when picking a film to be remade. People from different cultures may have different interpretations of things, whereas emotion is universal, that’s what humans have in common. It is the most solid thing when you produce a remake.
Do you think acquiring foreign remake rights will be a trend in China?
There have always been buyers of foreign remakes in China. Compared to them, we are neither the biggest buyer nor the earliest. Due to the pandemic in the first half of this year, many companies and talents in China have shifted their focus to content development, and many people are in the state of “retreat & create”. Acquiring remake rights helped companies accumulate content in a short period of time, and helped boost production as soon as the industry recovered from the pandemic. In China the production of many audiovisual projects has already resumed, so the accumulation of this content has allowed talents to start production immediately.
We have heard that in China, the online streaming of dramas is growing rapidly. What do you think about the future of the traditional theatrical release?
Undoubtedly, the pandemic has had a certain impact on traditional theatres in China. And it has also given me more time to research and develop projects for online streaming. In my opinion, movies produced for the internet and movies produced for theatres are two different lines, at least for China. The former is more product-orientated which is based on audiences’ preferences, while the latter is more creator-orientated, focusing on the content of the productions. These two lines are actually complementary.
We have recently developed and produced four online movies in the second half of this year, and we are currently laying out the strategy for this line.
Do you think the future will bring more collaborations between Europe and China?
Yes, absolutely! I am very optimistic. European audiovisual talents are extremely professional and have a very solid artistic foundation. There is a lot of room for co-operation between us in terms of scriptwriting, production knowledge and shooting locations. Through the recent sixth Sino-European Project Lab of Bridging the Dragon, I learned that many projects in Europe have plans to co-produce and cooperate with China. I think there is a wide range of co-operation modes and ways that can be discussed and implemented together.
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