When less is more

By Han Bingbin ( China Daily ) Updated: 2015-05-21 07:44:28

Screening period

The allegedly biased screening schedules of theaters these days have also caused some filmmakers to worry that it may squeeze the space for art-house productions and other films with serious subjects.

In a recent post on his micro blog, director Wang Xiaoshuai complained his award-winning film Red Amnesia was getting too few screenings in cinemas. He said now is the "best time for commercial films and worst for serious productions".

This change is, however, based on how theaters view their target audiences, which now consist of a growing number of teenagers, according to film columnist Yu Xin.

As a part of people's leisure, says veteran cinematographer Liang Ming, film is simply an entertainment product and should find a way to respect the market even when it's looking to demonstrate some cultural depth.

In terms of creating more space for serious productions, maybe China can learn from the United States, where films-especially art productions-have a much longer screening period so that their building reputation can bring bigger audiences, says analyst Peng Kan of Legend Media.

France even has a policy that the screenings of a single movie should remain no more than one-third the total number of screenings at a movie hall, according to Peng.

Or the scenario can be altered to nurture the tastes of future audiences.

"Why can't we bring cinemas into universities and show more art films?" says Yu.

"They are the mainstream audiences of the future. Their tastes will largely decide the quality of Chinese films, even world films, in the future."

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