TV forum delves into the zeitgeist

Rachel Lu
Festival event participants focus on how to capture the essence of storytelling while creating classic works that have a lasting impact and reflect the spirit of the times.
Rachel Lu

A forum at the 25th Shanghai TV Festival has provided insights into the creation of TV series that reflect the zeitgeist. 

The event, “The Recipe of a Series: Reality Driven, Zeitgeist Defined,” focused on the essence of storytelling in an era of media diversity, while staying true to observations and sentiments and creating classic works with lasting impact. 

Zhao Dongling, screenwriter of the 2014 TV series “Red Sorghum,” has experience in adapting literary masterpieces. To Zhao, the zeitgeist is an attitude toward art that incorporates historical evidence to convey the spirit of the times.

Actor Wang Jinsong, who has appeared in both historical and modern series, said TV series should take into consideration their value to the audience and provide a positive worldview in addition to entertainment. Wang emphasized the importance for actors to take the initiative in individualizing characters, which can only be done through thorough preparation rooted in research and observation. 

Producer and director Hou Hongliang believed the quality of television should be at the forefront of the public’s artistic taste and replicating past works should be avoided. 

Director Fu Dongyu redefined the zeitgeist as criticizing reality with kindness and a willingness to improve for a better future.

The forum participants agreed that an optimistic reflection inspired by everyday life makes for success in portraying reality in creative works.

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