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'Jointly-shot movies'absorb money in China   2012-09-03 08:34:00

The movies of "The Expendables 2" and "Looper” will be shown in September and "Cloud Atlas,” "Bait” and "Iron Man 3” will be shown in 2013. All these movies have a same label: They are jointly shot by China and the United States. However, some people doubt that some of these "jointly-shot" movies are not really "jointly-shot" movies and believe that calling them "jointly-shot" movies is just the Hollywood's strategy of absorbing money in the Chinese market. Recently, Zhang Pimin, the vice director-general of the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television, said in public that China will strictly examine the statuses of the "jointly-shot" movies in the future.

Strictly examining the "jointly-shot" movies is aimed to protect domestic movies

A few days ago, Zhang especially pointed out in the Movie Channel Seminar that with funds in China, some imported movies changed their statues into “jointly-shot” movies to enter the market. They have seized the market space and threatened the markets for domestic movies. In the future, the Administration will strictly examine the “jointly-shot” movies according to relevant regulations. “A movie should meet all the relevant standards before it is called a jointly-shot movie. We cannot say that a movie with a little Chinese investment or a few Chinese elements is a jointly-shot movie."

According to regulations, in a China-U.S. jointly-shot movie, the Chinese investment generally should not be less than one third and there must be Chinese actors playing major roles and scenes shot in China.

Huge interests behind “jointly shooting” attract Hollywood

In 2012, the number of China-U.S. jointly-shot movies has increased sharply. Insiders believe that the bloom of the jointly-shot movies is closely connected with the prosperity of the Chinese movie market. In past two years, China has turned into the second largest movie market smaller only than the North America market, shocking the Hollywood. The Hollywood is paying great attention to the booming Chinese market with a lot of money and trying various methods to obtain the attention of Chinese audiences. Adding Chinese elements in movies is a method they favor.

After the new regulations on China-U.S. movies were issued in 2012, the percentage of box office taken by the U.S. side has increased from 13 percent to 25 percent. In addition, jointly-shot movies do not occupy the quota of imported movies and the production side could get 43 percent of the income in a jointly-shot movie like in a movie produced domestically. Furthermore, jointly-shot movies could also participate in the Huabiao Award like domestic movies and the income tax is only 10 percent. However, for imported movies, the tariff has to be paid.

Jointly-shot movies should both be based on China and consider foreign countries

Currently, the movie production of China still cannot match that of the Hollywood. Shooting movies jointly can help China's movie industry learn the full movie production system of Hollywood and improve itself. However, all these should be carried out surrounding the goal of showing outstanding traditional Chinese cultures and building up a mainstream value.

The domestic movie circle wishes that it could bring Chinese cultures and values to the world by shooting movies with other countries and that the China-U.S. jointly-shot movies are about Chinese stories. Still, the awkward thing is that the jointly-shot movies taking U.S. elements as the core have nothing to do with China and those taking Chinese elements as the core are hard to be recognized globally, especially in the U.S. domestic market.

Insiders believe that, in order to obtain a win-win situation in shooting the jointly-shot movie, a breakthrough must be made in the script writing. The general manager of the China Film Co-production Corporation Zhang Xun believes that domestic script writers' international vision currently are still narrow and it is hard for them to write a script that is suitable for jointly-shooting, internationalized and at the same time shows Chinese cultural elements. Therefore, using a script jointly written by both sides could combine the story and the joint shooting more organically.

source : People's Daily Online     editor:: alice
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