Newly discovered films of early CPC leaders screened in Shanghai

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Newly discovered films featuring the founders of the Communist Party of China (CPC) were revealed to the public on Tuesday in Shanghai, said an official with the Shanghai Media Group(SMG).

The 35-mm films have been held in two archival institutions in Russia, said Chen Qi of the SMG's program document center.

Several of the CPC's eminent figures, including Chen Duxiu, Qu Qiubai, Wang Jinmei, Deng Enming, Zhang Guotao and Liu Renjing, can be seen in the films, he said.

Chen Duxiu and Qu Qiubai were CPC leaders, while the other four were representatives of the first National Congress of the CPC, which was held in July 1921.

The films were carefully compared with documents and photos by CPC historians and relatives of the famous figures to determine their authenticity.

While documents and photos from the early era of the CPC have been seen, discussed and exhibited in China before, films from the era are rare, according to Li Minghua, deputy director with the State Archives Administration of China.

From June 26, the SMG will show three major films spliced with footage from the films on its three channels to celebrate the 90th anniversary of the founding of the CPC.

The films do not feature any sound, as they were all shot in 1922, said Zhang Jingyue, a researcher from the SMG's media assets management center.

However, the films still vividly record the happenings of the day, despite having no sound.

In one video recorded during a conference of the Communist International (1919-1943) in 1922, an international communist organization, Chen Duxiu and Qu Qiubai are shown taking group photos with delegates from other countries.

SMG staff and CPC scholars worked to jointly search over 100 rolls of 35-mm film at the Russian archival institutions, copying several of them for screening in Shanghai, Zhang said.

For 70-year-old Wang Minghua, the grandson of Wang Jinmei, it was exciting to see his grandfather in action during the early days of the CPC.

"I was astonished to see that a gesture my grandfather made while sitting on a chair during the (Communist International) conference was exactly the same as a gesture I made in my college graduation photos," he said.

Wang Minghua's father Wang Jie, or the son of Wang Jinmei, said that he knew that the figure in the film was his father by his "big ears."

For China's younger generations, the films may help to introduce the history of the CPC in a more vivid and accessible way, said Li Yuzhen, a researcher at the Modern China Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

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