HERE & NOW Chinese success in Denmark

The international premiere of the Chinese film "Peach Blossom" was held on 5 April at the National Danish Film Institute, Cinemateket, in Copenhagen. The director, Fu Hua Yang (Fu Min), was present.

By Anders Wilhelm Knudsen - H.C. Andersen 2005 - 08 April 2005

The film, "Peach Blossom" is inspired by one of Andersen's lesser-known fairytales "Under the Willow Tree" as well as the novel "Peach Blossoming" by Chinese author Fang Fang.

"Peach Blossom" relates the love story between Xing Zi and Lu Xi and is set during the Cultural Revolution in China in the late 1970s. Just as the fairytale "Under the Willow Tree", the film tells the story of two lovers who represent two different worlds socially and who fail to express their love - and when one is finally pressured into speaking of his or her love, the other refrains from responding.

Director Fu Min has set the love story in the 1970s China along the Yangtze River. The film sweeps cinema-goers off their feet in a swell of emotion and deals with the complementary juxtaposition between man and woman and the relationship between sex and love in both allegorical and metaphorical terms (the peach blossom is a symbol of sexual intercourse, and the mutual divide between the two protagonists is symbolized by a bridge). Simple and realistic imagery and a melancholic, soulful soundtrack evoke Andersen's tragic tale of unattainable love between Knud and Joanne.

Fu Min answered questions from the audience. The local station TV2 Lorry covered the event at Cinemateket.

The film premiered in China on 25 March and has been well received and critically acclaimed as being "moving", "beautiful" and expressing "true emotions". In the lead roles are two of China's new rising stars, Guo Xiaodong and Zhou Yun.

Fu Min opened the event by first presenting the film. Refreshments were then served, and the director answered questions from the audience. To Fu Min the film is an archetypical Chinese love story while at the same time expressing his generation's view of contemporary China. The 44-year-old director uses phrases such as "regret" and "power" to describe his films common theme. On the question as to why his choice fell on "Under the Willow Tree", Fu Min answered that this fairytale is especially popular in China.
Fu Min has worked on the film for five years and has changed the storyline numerous times. The internationally acclaimed director Tian Zhuangzhuang, who assisted with the production, has deemed the film a viable future.

View film poster here.

The film was screened yesterday at Cinemateket as part of the NatFilm Festival and will also feature in Odense later this year. 

Several Chinese Andersen projects are on their way to Denmark. Among them is a major art exhibition, which opened yesterday in Northern Jutland. Read more about the exhibition here.

Read more about the film "Peach Blossom" at the official website:

"Peach Blossom" and the NatFilm Festival Andersen programme are sponsored by the HCA2005 Foundation.