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A Crucial Time for Hong Kong Cinema
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In recent years Chinese and Hong Kong cinema has been flooded with an avalanche of Chinese-Hong Kong co-productions made under CEPA III.


But not everyone feels that this is beneficial to the growth of Hong Kong cinema.


Peter Chan, who recently made a Chinese co-production for the first time with Perhaps Love feels that whilst the co-productions being produced at the current time might have benefits for investors in the short-term, they're detrimental in the long run.


Chan said, "The movies that work in China are only those four or five films a year which break the 100 million mark. Other than that, the remaining movies will not even make 10 million. There's nothing in-between. And just like any society, you need the rock-solid pillar of the middle class. So what happens is all the movie investors in Hong Kong will try to squeeze all their money into being one of the big five, and instead of making 10 movies they'll only make one."


The problem with this system, Chan believes, is that it makes it harder for new blood to enter the industry because investors won't want to trust a daring younger director with their one multi-million dollar film.


However, Chan feels that there is some light at the end of the tunnel. "Most Hong Kong companies know that if they don't squeeze into the big five, all the movies are going to loose money anyway, so they end up investing in a lot of 3 million dollar movies. Maybe there's room for young talent to actually make smaller movies. It's a very small budget, but at least you've got a chance. So right now we've got to wait for the younger generation to mature, to come of age, before we can say whether this industry will continue, whether we have a next generation or whether our generation will be that last. It's actually a very crucial time."


(hkfilmart June 12, 2006)

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