Zhang Yimou's new vehicle to export Chinese culture

By Zhang Rui
0 Comment(s)Print E-mail China.org.cn, November 17, 2016

Zhang Yimou attends a press conference to promote his new film "The Great Wall" in Beijing on Nov. 15, 2016. [Photo provided to China.org.cn]

Zhang unveiled the mysterious armies in the film guarding the Great Wall from monster attack. Video footages show the "Shadowless Forbidden Armies" consist of different forces named after five animals - bear (close combat army), crane (female air strike soldiers), tiger (heavy weaponry army), deer (cavalry) and eagle (archers).

The director explained that the five animals, and the five colors that represent them, are directly drawn from traditional Chinese culture and he looked forward to more foreign audiences being able to enjoy the beauty of the cultural elements.

During the filmmaking, the director said the most impressive part for him was the presence of so many translators to handle communication as he assembled an international crew for the filming. More than 100 on-set translators worked with the various cast and crew members.

Another thing, Zhang stressed, was that he hoped Chinese film academies could teach students to act with imagination, "In the future, there will be more and more demands for actors to act before the green screen. From my observation, Matt Damon and Pedro Pascal are more experienced when they act with a green screen; they know how to act when they were told how the monsters would come to them."

"The Great Wall" is co-produced by China Film Co. Ltd., LeVision Pictures, Legendary Pictures and Universal Pictures. It will hit Chinese theaters on Dec. 16, 2016 and be released in the United States on Feb. 17, 2017.

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