Director: Zhao's Orphan meant to be modern film

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Oscar-nominated Chinese director Chen Kaige said Saturday his new film, "Zhao's Orphan," was not a drama strictly based on the ancient revenge story but rather a modern film.

"I have been most touched by the characters in the story," Chen said at the inauguration of the film at Yangquan city in northern Shanxi Province, adding it would be quite different from what the audiences could normally imagine.

Chen did not give further details about the film.

The tragedy, called "Zhao Shi Gu Er" in Chinese, is inspired from a story that happened in China's Spring and Autumn Period (770 BC-476 BC).

The story revolves around a doctor who saves Zhao Wu, the only child of the Zhao family, by sacrificing his own baby, and then raises Zhao until he can take revenge on the general who tried to wipe out his family.

Chen said he would start shooting the work Monday.

The doctor Cheng Ying would be played by acclaimed actor Ge You. The film is an effort to understand the motives that drove the doctor to his extraordinary acts, Chen said earlier in February.

Chen's previous production, "Forever Enthralled," was a biopic of the late Peking Opera master Mei Lanfang.

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