For months, the Hong Kong entertainment industry has been suffering immense setbacks and losses due to COVID-19. With heath protocols in place, many productions have been pushed back because of inability to film. Hoping to stimulate the local film industry, the government officially pushed forward grants through its Film Development Fund.
The Fund sets aside $260 million Hong Kong dollars to help with five initiatives. Among one of its initiatives, HK$100 million was given to support filming 10 to 12 new movies, roughly averaging around HK$9 million per movie. The initiative matches participating renown directors with new and rising directors in hopes of developing new talent in the industry.
Renown directors Derek Yee (爾冬陞), Wong Kar Wai (王家衛), Peter Chan (陳可辛), Gordon Chan (陳嘉上), and co-directors Mabel Cheung and Alex Law (羅啟銳) have agreed to participate. They will lend their experience to new directors Wong Tak Kin (王德健), Xu Zijun (徐梓竣), Wong Chun (黃進), Chau Chi Ho (巢志豪), and Norris Wong (黃綺琳) in collaborative film projects.
When asked whom she decided to work with, director Mabel Cheung expressed, “This time, I reached out to my student, Norris Wong. I remember when she was at student, she was the only one who handed in a musical production as homework and that left a deep impression. She contacted me a couple of years ago for a collaboration, but we couldn’t figure out a working schedule. I recently watched her debut film, a production that she wrote herself, and thought she had a lot of potential. With my experience and her passion for movies, I’m hoping we can generate some sparks.”
Choosing to work with Xu Zijun, Wong Kar Wai revealed, “I’ll be collaborating with Xu Zijun, the assistant director from The Grandmaster <一代宗師>, because I’ve personally witnessed his growth and seen his passion for film making. The government’s plan allows new and rising directors to gain experience and will give Hong Kongers a bigger variety of filming styles to choose from.”
This article is written by Su for JayneStars.com.