Danny Boyle (Left of the uppermost), Jiang Wen (Middle of the uppermost) and Stephen Daldry talk at a discussion titled "Making Simple Films" Thursday during the ongoing 12th Shanghai International Film Festival, June 18, 2009.[sina.com]
Uncomplicated stories about the human condition against a backdrop of a fast developing society are what Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle encouraged local filmmakers to focus on at a discussion titled "Making Simple Films" Thursday in Shanghai.
Danny Boyle, who chairs the seven-member jury panel for the Golden Goblet awards at the 12th Shanghai International Film Festival, hosted the discussion along with Stephen Daldry, director of "The Reader," and Chinese actor-director Jiang Wen.
"Shanghai is an extraordinary city with so much and so quick development," Boyle said. "It has potential for really good and interesting stories."
The British director is keen to work on his upcoming film projects in China, but he said it would be a challenge for him to learn Mandarin.
"The biggest problem for the world cinema is language," Boyle added. "Maybe someday we can invent a software which can immediately change a Chinese movie into English."
It is the first time Boyle has acted as a judge at an international film festival. He stressed the importance of film festivals and their capacity to bring different film-making communities together. The Shanghai festival, which runs until Sunday, also features a retrospective of his movies including "The Beach" and "28 Days Later."
In the eyes of Daldry, story is everything for a good picture. He said the influence of Chinese cinema is increasing and he expects that to continue.
"Hollywood is still powerful," Daldry said. "But the fact is that people now hope to see more films from other countries."
Jiang urged domestic film makers to concentrate more on the quality and artistry of their movies instead of box office revenue.
"Movies always have a strong influence on children's growth," Jiang said. "A cinema with a lack of diversity and thoughtful productions would be a total disaster to the young generation."
(CRI June 19, 2009)