Here’s your daily dose of an indie film in progress — at the end of the week, you’ll have the chance to vote for your favorite. In the meantime: Is this a movie you’d want to see? Tell us in the comments.
King of Peking
Tweetable Logline: Rather than get mad when our last movie was bootlegged, we went out to make a movie about bootlegging.
Elevator Pitch: Inspired by a true story about fake movies, this is a feature film made by a group of friends whose last movie was widely pirated in Beijing. Set in 1998, “King of Peking” follows a traveling film projectionist who, with the advent of DVD, starts a small pirated movie business from home in order to keep custody of his son.
SAM VOUTAS (Writer / Director): An Australian, Sam was raised in Beijing. His films and documentaries have screened on TV channels such as The Biography Channel, NHK (Japan), KBS (Korea), CCTV (China) and PTS (Taiwan). “Red Light Revolution,” an independent Chinese feature film Sam wrote and directed, was released theatrically in Canada, the U.K and Singapore. It became a viral sensation in China when it was purchased by Tudou (China’s equivalent to YouTube), racking up over 6 million views. Sam has also acted in movies such as “City of Life and Death.”
MELANIE ANSLEY (Producer): Half Chinese and half Canadian, Melanie grew up in China and has always had a soft spot for films about moral integrity and the resilience of the human spirit. She started her producing career in documentaries exploring Chinese social issues. She completed her MFA in Producing at the USC Peter Stark program, where she was awarded the 2014 Women in Film scholarship. She recently co-wrote “Don Quixote: The Ingenious Gentleman of La Mancha,” starring Horatio Sanz and James Franco, which premiered at the 2015 Palm Springs Film Festival.
JANE ZHENG (Producer): Jane worked in radio and television for many years before studying TV journalism at Goldsmiths College, University of London. She was an associate producer for the 2009 theatrical feature film “Gasp,” starring John Savage and Ge You. Jane was also the executive producer of “Red Light Revolution.” Jane is the founder and owner of Seesaw Entertainment, a Beijing based production house.
YIFAN WANG (Cinematographer): Though “Red Light Revolution” was Yifan’s debut feature film as cinematographer, his previous credits run like a who’s who of Chinese blockbusters, such as “Curse of the Golden Flower” by Zhang Yimou, and “Children of Huangshi” directed by Roger Spotiswoode. He graduated from the Beijing Film Academy with a degree in cinematography.
About the Film: Our entire film crew was raised in Beijing and many of us are parents of young kids. The director is a soon-to-be dad. China has changed drastically since our childhood, and this is a chance for us to capture some of the Beijing we remember from our youth. We want to explore how sometimes even our most well intentioned actions as parents can set bad examples for our kids.
Current Status: We’re currently fundraising in order to take this from script to screen.
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