PIGPEN CINEMA Presents THE FIRST MONDAY IN MAY

  • Tue. 26 Jul, 2016
  • Doors open 9 | Movie starts 9:30
  • 65 Maoming Bei Lu (Weihai Lu/Yan’an Lu)
  • Drink specials: beer|wine|cocktails
  • Free “Grumpy” movie popcorn
  • Only 35 seats
  • First come first serve policy

The First Monday in May follows the creation of The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s most attended fashion exhibition in history, “China: Through The Looking Glass,” an exploration of Chinese-inspired Western fashions by Costume Institute curator Andrew Bolton. Andrew Rossi captures the collision of high fashion and celebrity at the Met Gala. Chaired every year by Vogue editor in chief Anna Wintour, the event features Wong Kar Wai, Karl Lagerfeld, Jean Paul Gaultier and John Galliano, as well as pop icons like Rihanna.

 

Dazzling BVLGARI

P.I.G.’s latest film for Bulgari China. Out of La Maison Shanghai and in co-production with Handsome, directed by Eugenio Recuenco,  the Chinese star Kris Wu brought us a dazzling fashion show.

Credits:

  • Agency: La Maison Shanghai
  • Director: Eugenio Recuenco
  • Production Houses: P.I.G. China / Handsome
  • Post Production: Nightshift
  • Music: GUM Shanghai

Free minds, Free bodies

“Life doesn’t happen online. It happens outside, in the streets. Under the sky. Amongst other bodies”

P.I.G. China director Dean Freeman’s latest film tells a story of mind and body. Shot in Havana, Cuba, the film depicts the streets, playgrounds, beaches of the city, but most importantly, the free spirits who answer the call of their minds to push the limits of bodies in an utopian society.

PIGMAN does Cannes

Cannes2 Cannes_CH

PIGPEN CINEMA Presents SALT OF THE EARTH

Tue. 24 May, 2016
Doors open 9 | Movie starts 9:30
65 Maoming Bei Lu (Weihai Lu/Yan’an Lu)
Drink specials: beer|wine|cocktails
Free “Grumpy” movie popcorn
Only 35 seats
First come first serve policy

For the last 40 years, the photographer Sebastião Salgado has been travelling through the continents, in the footsteps of an ever-changing humanity. He has witnessed some of the major events of our recent history; international conflicts, starvation and exodus. He is now embarking on the discovery of pristine territories, of wild fauna and flora, and of grandiose landscapes as part of a huge photographic project, which is a tribute to the planet’s beauty.

Sebastião Salgado’s life and work are revealed to us by his son, Juliano, who went with him during his last travels, and by Wim Wenders, himself a photographer.

British Invasion

The 2012 release of Xu Zheng’s Lost in Thailand marked the beginning of a period of explosive growth in the Chinese movie industry. This year Stephen Chow’s The Mermaid became the highest grossing film in domestic box office history and the first to take over RMB 3 billion (over US$500 million). Box office takings in 2015 totaled US$6.8 billion, a 48.7 percent year-on-year increase. That figure is expected to keep growing, with the number of cinema screens set to increase from 32,000 to 53,000 by 2017.

Po-01Posters of The Mermaid & Lost in Thailand

Chinese companies are mobilising to create content to feed the monster. Alongside expanding production by state-run powers such as China Film Group, behemoths from other industries such as Alibaba and Tencent have established film divisions, and in some cases are making massive investments in to productions. Most notable is Wanda’s US$4.9 billion Oriental Movie Metropolis, currently under construction in Qingdao.

MMetroWanda Picture Oriental Movie Metropolis

A glance at the list of hit movies clearly demonstrates the Chinese audience’s hunger for big visual effect (VFX) driven spectaculars.  To give their products the best chance of box office success, moviemakers are increasingly seeking higher quality computer generated magic, no matter where in the world the providers may be based.

The UK, with one of the world’s strongest VFX industries, is looking to capitalise on the China opportunity. Since the late 1980s, the UK government has been instrumental in developing the sector by offering tax credits for studios that bring their productions to Britain.  Concentrated almost exclusively in one square mile in Soho, London’s post-production houses provide effects for the biggest movies on the planet, both from Hollywood and the domestic market.

War and Peace_Napoleon_after_BBWar and Peace, VFX by BlueBolt

The UK industry is taking steps to explore the potential for collaboration with Chinese content creators.  In one recent initiative, the government-supported British Film Commission, in partnership with the China Britain Business Council and the UKTI, brought three leading British visual effects companies to Beijing for the UK-China VFX Forum, a day of presentations and discussion between founding members of Framestore, BlueBolt and Union and a handful of China’s most powerful film companies.

Game of Thrones VFX breakdowns, by BlueBolt

Though UK-China collaboration on movies has so far remained limited, some UK VFX companies have already begun working with China in other opportunity areas.  MPC, one of the UK’s ‘big three’ houses along with Framestore and Double Negative, opened a facility in Shanghai in 2015, their tenth office worldwide, to capitalize on China’s flourishing TV commercial market.  Additionally, the scores of theme parks being built in China is creating demand for media for attractions.  Framestore is currently collaborating with Wanda on a ride for their numerous parks around China.

War and Peace_army marching_before_BBWar and Peace_army marching_after_BBBefore and after scene from War and Peace, VFX by BlueBolt

Price presents one of the biggest challenges for potential partnerships. World-class talent and high London rents means UK VFX companies must charge a premium rate beyond the budgets of most Chinese studios. 

Fundamental differences in culture and business practices are also problematic. Chinese production schedules tend to be even tighter than those in the West, with financiers notoriously impatient to see films finished, released and a return on investment.  Then there is the language barrier and an eight-hour time difference complicating daily production. 

Guardians of the Galaxy, VFX by Framestore

Skilled producers, experienced in dealing with Western VFX vendors are essential but, given that collaboration with Europe is a new business model, such individuals are in short supply. “It’s on the burden of the production to manage international vendors. That’s what filmmakers and studios don’t get yet,” says John Dietz, a Beijing-based VFX producer and supervisor with 15 film credits in China, and founder of BangBang, a Chinese company that manages VFX and technology for local film productionsHe continues, “In China we tend to think that you hire a vendor and they just figure it all out, but that’s exactly what causes and fuels a mood from both sides [feeling] that it can’t work.”

Hg019065HmasterCompv119qcc0330Avatar, VFX by Framestore

There is no easy solution. Local producers need time to grow in experience, while UK companies must be open-minded, flexible and understanding in how they approach projects with Chinese studios. Chinese film studios will need to stop settling for ‘good enough’ and make world-class visual effects a priority, and allocate budgets accordingly.

One option for UK companies may be to establish a studio on the ground in China, though committing to working in China requires significant time as well as financial investment. Operating as a front office and doing the work remotely around the world has proven to be a flawed strategy, exemplified by the closure of several foreign post houses in the last four years.

Bastille Day VFX breakdown, by Union VFX

Jinhaian Films director and producer Liu Xiaoguang, speaking at the UK-China VFX Forum, was blunt in his assessment, “It’s very different here. We make CG and use the same software, but those are the only things we have in common [with the UK industry].” He warns those setting up in China to “be prepared to suffer for at least five years.”

bastille_157_050_beforebastille_157_050_afterBefore and after scene from Bastille Day, VFX by Union VFX

John Dietz on the other hand, is optimistic. He is currently working with a UK shop on his next movie and predicts a gradual positive evolution. “There will be lots more UK-China collaboration; it’s about experience – little by little,” he says. “Both sides will just need to go through some growing pains. It takes a lot of work to make a VFX film and to work through cultural, business, language and experience differences. The producers need to understand that. When it gets hard, both sides need to work through it, not get defensive and point figures,” he continues. “If they really want to make it work, they will.”


本文由China Britain Business FOCUS 2016年4月刊一篇文章改写而成。

This article is adapted from a piece first published in China Britain Business FOCUS, April 2016.

A Special Anniversary

This Spring, Holiday Inn and Ogilvy Shanghai re-teamed with directors J&J to bring us episode 2 of their Moments of Joy campaign, “Anniversary”. This time we follow a young professional couple, constantly on the go and constantly missing each other due to work travel and late nights in the office — a situation all too common now not only in China but all over the globe. 

Credits:

  • Client: IHG Holiday Inn
  • Agency: Ogilvy Shanghai
  • ECD: Darren Crawforth
  • Director: J+J
  • Production Company: P.I.G. China
  • Producer: Melissa Lee
  • Postproduction company: MPC Shanghai
  • Composer: Albert Yu

INTRODUCING…

Stampa

Stampa

PIGPEN CINEMA Presents BANKSY DOES NEW YORK

Tue. 24 May, 2016
Doors open 9 | Movie starts 9:30
65 Maoming Bei Lu (Weihai Lu/Yan’an Lu)
Drink specials: beer|wine|cocktails
Free “Grumpy” movie popcorn
Only 35 seats
First come first serve policy

October 2013, when infamous street artist Banksy revealed his New York City residency, he set off a daily scavenger hunt among curious fans, would-be art collectors and, of course, the police. With camera phones at the ready, everyone wanted a piece of his ephemeral works before they were destroyed—or removed for profit. Chris Moukarbel tracks the course of Banksy’s secretly created public works from the Lower East Side to Staten Island, Williamsburg to Willets Point, and explores the unprecedented speed of the public’s reaction.

What Chew Talking About?

A Chinese young woman and Italian man hit the language barrier when they try to strike up a conversation on a plane in a fun new spot for Wrigley’s Doublemint Chewable Mints, created by BBDO South China, produced by P.I.G China and directed by Nelson Cabrera.

Credits:

  • Client: Wrigley China
  • Agency: BBDO South China 
  • Executive Creative Director: Kevin Lynch
  • Creative Director: Helen Sze
  • Business Director: Eric Zhou
  • Agency Producer: Maggie Ng
  • Production Company: P.I.G. China
  • Director: Nelson Cabrera
  • Executive Producer: Nick Dodet
  • Production Service Company Bangkok: Ta Prod
  • Line Producers: Anne Prakaiwat Guyon / Louis D.