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70th anniversary parties captured on film

By Xu Fan | China Daily | Updated: 2019-11-13 09:03

A new documentary shows how ordinary people around the country found their own ways to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China.

World's Biggest Birthday Party, a documentary that captures their celebrations, will run in China as well as more than 100 countries and regions on the National Geographic Channel starting Wednesday, producers announced in Beijing on Tuesday.

An international coproduction, the documentary is presented by China Intercontinental Communication Center and the National Geographic Channel, and was coproduced by Meridian Line Films, a British company.

Jing Shuiqing, vice-president of CICC, said the documentary focuses on the exciting moment when the entire country was in the mood to celebrate. It also offers a retrospective of the huge transformations seen over the past seven decades.

With filming lasting around three months, the crew - consisting of more than 20 members - trekked thousands of kilometers to follow 10 people and groups from different walks of life in eight provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities.

Unfolding across vast fields in rural areas in Panjin, Liaoning province, the film begins by turning its lens on a farmer who joins her fellow villagers to plant crops of various colors to form "paintings", such as huge red-crown cranes stretching their wings and the Mandarin phrase "Long Live the Motherland".

Interesting personal celebrations also include a Sichuan chef who combines ingredients from various provinces to cook a symbolic feast; a 70-year-old man who cycles over 4,000 kilometers from Zhejiang province to the Tibet autonomous region; and a painter adapting a 1949 family photo into a huge painting.

Aside from individuals, the documentary also shows China's achievements in infrastructure construction, exemplified by the Badaling Railway Station, the deepest high-speed railway station in the world, and airlines operating at Beijing Daxing International Airport.

"The documentary marks one of the largest-scale productions that we've made in recent years," said Wang Yuanyuan, executive producer of the documentary and director of the program production center of CICC.

She highlighted that the production not only focuses on the country's pivotal moment but also explores the huge impact made by China's opening-up and reforms on ordinary people over the past 40 years.

Noting that it was the latest cooperation with Meridian since a production about the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Wang said the company's excellence in storytelling and photography are helpful to them.

"China has a long history and rich culture that could spawn many inspirations for quality documentaries," Wang said. "Through cooperation with our US and British partners, we could make Chinese tales more appealing to overseas audiences."

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