|Ying Liang, director of When Night Falls, currently threatened with arrest if he returns to mainland China.|
As mentioned in my “Newsbites” post yesterday China’s independent film culture has been under pressure in recent months, with documentarian Hu Jie prevented from leaving China and the Beijing Independent Film Festival opening shutdown through a power cut last month. Back in June I noted that feature film director Ying Liang had been threatened with arrest if he returns to mainland China following the debut of his film When Night Falls in South Korea in April. That threat apparently still stands.
Yesterday the Australian news site Crikey published an article by me detailing these issues. Here’s an excerpt:
"From the outside, the actions of Chinese state security can often read like an absurdist black comedy. For those living under its jurisdiction, however, it can create a Kafkaeque nightmare. As several Chinese filmmakers have recently found, alleged offences are often unclear and punitive restrictions can be imposed without notice or warning.
Chinese documentary maker Hu Jie, for example, was prevented from leaving China last month. As recently as late last year, he was able to visit the Special Administrative Region of Hong Kong, which mainland Chinese need a permit to enter. However, when he applied for a visa to attend a screening of one of his films at Nepal’s Film Southasia festival, mysterious obstacles appeared in his path..."
You can read the full article here.