For­eign film­mak­ers cap­ture Or­dos for wider au­di­ence

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - LIFE - By HE SHUANG in Bei­jing and YUAN HUI in Ho­hhot

Five for­eign film­mak­ers ex­plored crafts­man­ship in Or­dos, In­ner Mon­go­lia au­ton­o­mous re­gion, by shoot­ing short films in the city ear­lier this month as part of the Look­ing China Youth Film Project, an an­nual event or­ga­nized by the Huilin Foun­da­tion and Academy for In­ter­na­tional Com­mu­ni­ca­tion of Chi­nese Cul­ture at Bei­jing Nor­mal Univer­sity since 2011.

The event is in­tended to pro­mote Chi­nese cul­ture travel more widely through the cam­eras and per­spec­tives of for­eign film­mak­ers.

This year’s young di­rec­tors and cam­era crew are from Cam­bo­dia, Laos, Thai­land, Myan­mar and Malaysia. With the help of South­east Asia Broad­cast­ing Cen­ter of China Ra­dio In­ter­na­tional and Or­dos New Me­dia Cen­ter, they spent about two weeks in Or­dos and nearby ar­eas for their projects.

Their tour fo­cused on crafts­man­ship in Or­dos as re­vealed through the var­i­ous skills of its peo­ple, in­clud­ing grow­ing trees to pre­vent de­ser­ti­fi­ca­tion, en­hanc­ing art forms such as tra­di­tional songs, mak­ing car­pets by hand, dec­o­rat­ing wood with burn marks, and mak­ing Mon­go­lian clothes and head­wear.

Chansey Phan, a film di­rec­tor from Cam­bo­dia, says he liked his crew to call him by his Chi­nese name, Pan Jiang­shui.

His film tells the story of a worker who has been plant­ing trees in Kubuqi, a large desert in Or­dos, for about 15 years and con­trib­uted to the city’s ef­forts to com­bat de­ser­ti­fi­ca­tion.

He had to go to the windy desert ev­ery morn­ing and stay there un­til late at night to doc­u­ment the worker’s life and cap­ture the desert’s sights.

Phan says the worker’s per­sis­tence touched him and the desert’s vast beauty amazed him.

“The task was chal­leng­ing but full of joy,” he says.

Wee Your Lee, a film­maker from Malaysia, chose py­rog­ra­phy as his sub­ject. He filmed a vet­eran in Or­dos dec­o­rat­ing wood with burn marks.

“It will be a pity if the art dies,” says Wee. “I hope that through my lens, more peo­ple around the world will learn about the art and sup­port its preser­va­tion.”

Tee Inthi­lard, a cam­era­man for MV Lao Tele­vi­sion in Laos, chose Gur­duu, an eth­nic Mon­go­lian mu­sic form, for his film. “The mu­sic goes through the heart. It’s so amaz­ing,” says Inthi­lard.

All the films were shown in Or­dos on July 11 and a se­lected few will be screened in­ter­na­tion­ally later.

Con­tact the writ­ers through hes­huang@ chi­


Nay Htet, a di­rec­tor from Myan­mar, does a film on Mon­go­lian clothes and head­wear.

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