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Hong Kong auteurs ready to roll on coproductions

By Honey Tsang | China Daily | Updated: 2017-06-16 07:57

At the China Daily Asia Leadership Roundtable Panel on March 16, themed the "Sino-Foreign Coproduction Films Summit", Yip Chai-tuck, executive director of Media Asia Group Holdings, a leading Hong Kong production and distribution company responsible for the production of Love off the Cuff, stressed that movies are craft in nature.

"Discerning viewers never judge a film by whether it's a coproduction or not," Yip said.

While many enjoy penetrating the flourishing movie market in the Chinese mainland, some Hong Kong filmmakers think coproductions might also entail a few wrinkles - such as what they called the "pandering" issue. They are concerned that collaboration could stymie creativity because some content is inserted to cater for mainland audiences.

In response, film director Teddy Chen said a nicely-written screenplay can meld different components into one that can charm audiences from a range of cultural backgrounds.

Such an outlook is also evident in Love off the Cuff, which has succeeded in allowing audiences across the border to enjoy Cantonese repartee and an urban love story set in Hong Kong.

"The magic comes once you have the ability to capture those little components everyone loves and can relate to," said Dagan Potter, production lead at Oriental Dreamworks, which produced the Sino-US animation Kung Fu Panda 3.

When asked about the recipe for a winning coproduction, Potter said: "We're just one big team, such that we don't even think it's a coproduction." Instead, they just think of themselves as filmmakers.

"It's really bringing talents together, and ultimately, creating one big team that has a singular vision - and delivering on that."

Contact the writer at honeytsang@chinadailyhk.com

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