Mexican soap operas build cultural bridge with China

( Xinhua ) Updated: 2015-06-07 08:46:10

Mexican soap operas have gained popularity among Chinese audience in the past three decades, serving as a cultural link between the two distant nations.

Featuring tales of unrequited love and unforgivable betrayal, these dramatic daytime or nighttime series have elicited sighs and smiles on both sides of the Pacific, with human stories that millions of viewers in both Latin America and Asia can identify with.

Peruvian novelist Mario Vargas Llosa once said:" Culture has done for Latin America what politics and economics have failed to achieve: integration."

The cultural bridge that has connected the two regions via the small screen has been in place since at least the 1980s, following the production of "The Rich Also Cry" ("Los ricos tambien lloran"), a Mexican soap opera that was an enormous hit in China.

Produced in 1979 by Mexican TV network Televisa, the soap opera starred actors Veronica Castro and Rogelio Guerra as an unlikely match -- she's a poor orphan, he's a debonair millionaire -- thrown together by fate, but kept apart by meddlesome family members with their eyes on the money.

It was a gripping and winning formula that proved successful in distracting viewers from their own troubles, even if just for a few minutes each day. So successful, in fact, that in 2007, Televisa signed an agreement with the Chinese government to produce soap operas in China for Chinese audiences.

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