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India-China: Filmi bhai-bhai

By Sachin Chatte

The country focus this year at the International Film Festival at India is on China. A package of contemporary Chinese films will be screened at the fest and there is also a delegation coming from China for the same. After the Chinese President Xi Jinping’s high profile visit to India earlier this year, China was declared as the country in focus.

In all nine Chinese films will be screened in this category. It includes American Dreams in China (Dir Peter Chan), Silent Witness, Beijing Blues (Dir Qunshu Gao), Caught In The Web (Kaige Chen), Out Of Inferno (Dir Oxide Pang Chun, Danny Pang), Christmas Rose (Charlie Yeung), Feng Shui  (Dir Jing Wang), Finding Mr. Right (Dir Xiao Lu Xue) and The Great Hypnotist (Leste Chen).

The Sino-Indian collaboration goes beyond IFFI. The idea is to bring the creative pool of both countries together for joint productions and one of the agendas of this IFFI is to take forward the treaty, as stakeholders from both countries will meet on the sidelines of the festival.

While India is one of the biggest producers of films in the world, the growth of multiplexes in China is happening at a very rapid pace. Presently, China has almost twice the number of multiplexes compared to India.

Chinese martial art films, especially of Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan, have always been popular in India and the works of directors like Zhang Yimou and Wong Kar Wai are familiar to film buffs.

Indian films like 3 Idiots and Dhoom 3 were highly successful in China and the overall Chinese box office collections surged by 30 per cent to 4.6 billion dollars in the year 2014 itself. A large chunk of it goes to Hollywood films.

With the new production treaty one can expect a new course to be charted in films as far as both the countries are concerned.

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