Film forum explores the future of Chinese sci-fi movies

Xu Wei
Ever since the box-office success of "The Wandering Earth" and "Crazy Alien" in 2019, the sci-fi film genre has triggered increasing public awareness among Chinese filmmakers.
Xu Wei

China's achievements and breakthroughs in space science will inspire and incubate more original home-grown science-fiction movies, film professionals told a forum at the 24th Shanghai International Film Festival.

Ever since the box-office success of two Chinese sci-fi movies in 2019 – "The Wandering Earth" and "Crazy Alien" – the sci-fi film genre has triggered increasing public awareness among Chinese filmmakers. 

Wang Hongwei, vice president of the China Film Director's Guild, said the genre is of special importance to the film industry, as it can greatly help to improve the professionalization and industrialization of Chinese cinema.

"New cinematic technologies, expertise and a mature shooting mechanism are all required in the production of a sci-fi film," Wang said. 

He encouraged domestic filmmakers to broaden their imagination and break the boundaries of sci-fi movies with other genres.

"The point is to tell our own distinctive sci-fi stories rather than simply combine the Hollywood sci-fi format with some Chinese elements," he said.

Wang, who was involved in the production and scriptwriting of "The Wandering Earth," revealed that they are now working on the film's sequel and will improve the storytelling and scenes.

Film forum explores the future of Chinese sci-fi movies

"The Wandering Earth"

Sci-fi author and screenwriter Chen Qiufan noted that the sci-fi film genre is closely related to the progress of science and technology.

"New scientific achievements in China can provide abundant inspiration and materials for filmmakers," said Chen. 

Screenwriter and director Dong Runnian added that in addition to cutting-edge technologies, sci-fi movies can draw inspiration from people's daily lives.

In his eyes, China has strikingly compressed decades of Western development into only a few years. 

"The rapid changes and social development around us are also a rich source for sci-fi movies," Dong said. "We can explore many sci-fi stories in our daily lives, such as the influences of the Internet, social networks and mobile phones on our relationships."

According to Han Song, a sci-fi writer and director of the Science Fiction Committee of China Science Writers Association, a good sci-fi production usually breaks people's stereotypes about the world and can heighten in-depth cultural and philosophical reflection.

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