Wednesday, 21 September 2011

1911: Revolution. Jackie Chan’s film about the Chinese revolution...

submit to reddit Delicious Bookmark this on Delicious

100 years since the revolution and Jackie Chan’s 100th film, this is a very special film indeed. Chosen to help commemorate, celebrate and increase global knowledge of the Chinese revolution of 1911; this film opens in China this weekend and rolls out around the rest of the world shortly after. (Dates at the end.)

“At the beginning of the 20th century, China is in a state of crisis. The country is split into warring factions, the citizens are starving, and recent political reforms have made matters worse, not better. The ruling Qing Dynasty, led by a seven-year-old emperor and his ruthless mother, Empress Dowager Longyu (Joan Chen), is completely out of touch after 250 years of unquestioned power. With ordinary citizens beginning to revolt openly, the Qing Dynasty has created a powerful, modern army (the "New Army") to quash any rebellion. But weapons are expensive and desperate for cash; the Qing leaders are trading anything they can get their hands on with foreign countries... and selling China”

It’s obviously a very important film to those who have made it, to the Chinese government and, if it manages to e a success worldwide it will bring a lot of pride to the Chinese film industry. (Especially with so many big American films stealing the headlines and big box office in China this year.)
Here’s some more detail on the 3 main characters and the actors who portray them in this film...

HUANG XING  - played by Jackie Chan
Huang Hsing; (October 25, 1874 – October 31, 1916), Chinese revolutionary leader, militarist and statesman, was the first army commander-in-chief of the Republic of China. As one of the founders of the Kuomintang (KMT) and the Republic of China, his position was next to Sun Yat-sen. Together they were known as Sun-Huang during the Xinhai Revolution. He was also known as the "Eight Fingered General" because of wounds sustained during the war. His tomb is on Mount Yuelu, in Changsha, Hunan, China.

XUZONG HAN – Played by Li Binbing
Xuzong Han (1877-1944), formerly known as Peixuan, was Huang Hsing's wife. Xu, affected by democratic ideas, promoted women's rights and was an advocate for women's schooling. In 1907 Xu went to Southeast Asia, joined the League in Penang, then went back to the League of Guangzhou and set up secret Jianfu other agencies, launched in February 1910 in the Guangzhou New Army uprising. Xu fled after the failure of Hong Kong and returned to Guangzhou to participate in the uprising in 1911; She was responsible for manufacturing and shipment of arms. When Huang Xing was wounded during the intifada, Xu took good care of him and escorted him to Hong Kong for medical treatment; they got married afterward.
A graduate of the Shanghai Theatre Academy, Li Bingbing rose to prominence in 1999 in director Zhang Yuan's Seventeen Years. From then on, Lee worked with Hong Kong and Chinese directors, among them Feng Xiaogang (A World without Thieves), Johnny To (Linger) and Tsui Hark (Detective Dee); she also worked side by side with the best Asian stars, among them Andy Lau and Jackie Chan. Lee has been nominated and won many film awards in China and around Asia. As an advocate for the environment, Lee is dedicated to her work with many charitable organizations.

SUN YAT-SEN – played by Winston Chao
Sun Yat-sen (November 12, 1866 –March 12, 1925) was a Chinese revolutionary and political leader. As the foremost pioneer of Nationalist China, Sun is frequently referred to as the Founding Father of Republican China, a view agreed upon by both Mainland China and Taiwan. Sun played an instrumental role in inspiring the overthrow of the Qing Dynasty, the last imperial dynasty of China, which began in October 1911.
Taiwan-born Winston Chao catapulted to international stardom in 1992 after playing the leading role in Ang Lee's The Wedding Banquet. His collaboration with Lee continued the next year with Eat Drink Man Woman, which became another box office hit. Chao has portrayed the role of Sun Yat-sen before, most notably in the film The Soong Sisters (1995) as well as the title role of the television series, Sun Yat-sen

The fm has 2 directors listed, Jackie Chan & Zhang Li. Li is officially titled ‘Geneal Director and here’s what he has to say about that role...

“Despite having the title as General Director for 1911, most of my time during the production I was in fact serving as a consultant. Zhang Li is an outstanding director: he knew how to capture each of the scenes far better than I would during the shoot. But how to let the global audience understand and appreciate this film requires a delicate balancing act between reconstructing history and allowing for imagination. There are many battle scenes in this film: I'd provide my advice based on my own experience on how to choose between visually arresting action and the reality of battle.
Today we have a China that is relatively well-off, thanks to many before us who risked their lives, eschewed personal gains, honour and glory, giving themselves for the benefit of the country and its people. Every country must sustain a fair and stable society first, then talk about prosperity and abundance. We should all cherish and protect what we have around us. This is the important message that I want 1911 to bring forth.”

Zhang Li has worked as the cinematographer on several films, including ‘ Red Cliff’ & ‘Red Cliff 2’ and ‘The Banquet’. 1911 is his first film as a director and he has this to say...

“1911 is a film specially made for the centenary of the Xinhai Revolution. This epic is like the unfolding of a large-scale scroll painting, with scenes shot entirely on location. The retelling of the events of 1911 is a way of using art to revisit those revolutionary heroes, their patriotism and willingness to risk their lives. The Xinhai Revolution is a great revolution of the people in the modern history of China. It overthrew the Qing dynasty, ending more than two millennia of feudal rule and opening a new chapter in Chinese history with the establishment of a Republic. The film 1911 is a vehicle to retrace and show respect to that collective memory of a nation. Our mission is to continue to foster the spirit of the Xinhai Revolution, to continue the ideals of our forebears. All of us in the production and creative team applied our efforts in the hope of recreating the story, images, scenes, so that the people will further understand the historical mission and be motivated by the collective wish to realize the rejuvenation of the great Chinese nation.”

Here’s the trailer...

23 September 2011
Hong Kong
29 September 2011
29 September 2011
12 October 2011
5 November 2011

No comments:

Post a Comment