Hong Kong director Andrew Lau Wai Keung listens to a question during the Vision Beijing news conference in Beijing yesterday. The project has showcased five short films by five world famous film directors, namely Lau, Giuseppe Tornatore of Italy, Majid Majidi of Iran, Patrice Leconte of France and Daryl Goodrich of Britain. The short films are about Beijing and the people's preparations for the 2008 Olympic Games.
Five short films about the preparation for the Beijing Olympic Games shot by world renowned directors will be broadcasted on TV both at home and abroad.
In a project named Vision Beijing aiming to promote the Olympic host city Beijing, the municipality invited Giuseppe Tornatore, Majid Majidi from Iran, Patrice Leconte of France, Daryl Goodrich of Britain as well as Andrew Lau Wai Keung from Hong Kong to each make a short film telling stories concerning Chinese people's preparation for the Aug. 8-24 Games.
It took 600 days to finish the project before the premier takes place on Sunday, said Wang Hui, an official from the Beijing Olympics organizing committee on Saturday.
The five films will be screened via CCTV-2 on Feb. 28 and they are also on Beijing TV, the national TV stations of Italy, France and Iran. Sohu.com will put the films online for global viewing.
In Tornatore's first trip to China, the Italian, Academy Award winner for Nuovo Cinema Paradiso in 1999, made Reunion, telling a story about how a group of students and their teacher got back together after 30 years.
It was also the first time for Majidi to China. After showed around, he said he was particularly impressed by the vitality of elder people.
"I am most impressed by the middle-aged and retired people, who have great passion for life," he said.
Despite his impression for the elderly, Majidi, nominated for Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film with Children of Heaven in 1998, chose his favorite subject, children.
In Colors Fly, Majidi focused on children looking forward to the Games.
Leconte was a stranger to Beijing too but he soon caught up with his knowledge for the Chinese capital, shooting Beijing -- A Film Impressionistic.
Arguably France's best director, Leconte depicted Beijing through various structures including Summer Palace, Olympic venues and modern constructions.
Retired as an athlete, Goodrich found his career in a combination of sport and film-making.
After his success in his promotional film for London's bid for the 2012 Olympics, he joined Vision Beijing.
His five-minute film, entitled Belief, focused on the hard work and thrill of athletic competition.
Hong Kong director Lau, the only Chinese director invited to the project, showed his love for the Chinese food in Color, Fragrance, Taste Beijing.
Lau, having a large group of fans in China thanks to his hit works including Storm Riders, Infernal Affairs and Initial D, showed different types of famous Chinese food and depicted relations between food and Chinese culture.
"I love food so I am the right person to make the film," said Lau half-jokingly. "The only problem is there are too many types of food for me to choose for my film. I just have to show the best of the best."
(Xinhua News Agency February 25, 2008)