Thursday, January 24, 2013

Chinese Box Office Figures for 2012 Released

A steamy moment from Painted Skin 2: The Resurrection, the second highest grossing domestically-made film in China in 2012.
SARFT has published the box domestic and overseas box office performers for 2012, and CMM-I have re-published the results in English here and here - or you can see the top ten results below.

As noted in a Newsbites post earlier this week, the low-budget comedy Lost in Thailand was the shock winner in the domestic box office stakes last year, pulling in a cool RMB 1 billion by the end of the year. The film is still in cinemas, so that figure has no doubt grown considerably in the first weeks of 2013.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Art, Activism and Ai Weiwei - Alison Klayman’s "Never Sorry"

Ai Weiwei sends the authorities a message from his hospital bed after suffering a cerebral haemorrhage following a blow from a policeman in Alison Klayman's documentary Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry.

Alison Klayman's documentary Never Sorrry, about China's most controversial contemporary artist Ai Weiwei, has garnered acclaim around the world and was short-listed for the Best Documentary Academy Award this year (unfortunately it didn't make the final list of nominees). After screening at last year's Melbourne International Film Festival it enjoyed a brief theatrical season at Melbourne's Nova Cinema. It has now been released on DVD in Australia by Madman.

I interviewed Klayman when she was in Melbourne last year, and reviewed her film for the Dec-Jan issue of RealTime magazine. The RealTime article is reproduced below - you can see the piece in its original context here.

Art, Activism and Ai Weiwei - Alison Klayman’s Never Sorry

Ai weiwei has been accused of bigamy, charged with tax evasion, condemned as a subversive and dismissed as a clown. Although infamous as the artist the Chinese authorities love to hate, his critics are by no means only from government ranks.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Newsbites: Shock Box Office Hit, Wong Karwai Returns, and More Cancelled Festivals

Zhang Ziyi in Wong Karwai's new martial arts feature The Grandmaster.

Screening China’s regular roundup of Chinese film news.

Happy 2013! It’s been a very long time between posts here at Screening China - I got a little overwhelmed with the end-of-year rush in the final months of 2012. Among other things, I attended the annual Visible Evidence documentary conference in late December in Canberra. I'm pleased to say the event featured several papers focussed on Chinese documentary, by luminaries such as Paola Voci and Ying Qian.

Here’s a roundup of Chinese film news over the past few months.