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Interview: Big Fish & Begonia Directors Zhang Chun and Liang Xuan




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Paulo27



Joined: 22 Jan 2015
Posts: 400
PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2018 1:43 pm Reply with quote
Just wish there was an higher quality version of this available.
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whiskeyii



Joined: 29 May 2013
Posts: 1933
PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2018 2:14 pm Reply with quote
I'd like to see a follow-up discussing the literature Big Fish and Begonia was inspired by! I'd never heard of either of the myths mentioned in the article.
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Xe4



Joined: 04 May 2015
Posts: 86
PostPosted: Wed Apr 04, 2018 6:40 pm Reply with quote
Great interview. Even though I've heard sort of mixed things about Big Fish, I'm still absolutely looking forward to it, if only to support original Chinese animation. As with the director I really hope Chineese animation takes off in a big way, not only monetarily but genre wise as well.

I've long held that the more diversity in animation the better. This is diversity for not only race and ethnicity, but also regional, genre, sexual, and otherwise. The wider variety of people and places we have yelling amazing animated stories the higher the chance we will end up with some really special stuff, and the more the medium as a whole will advance.
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Marc Nix



Joined: 13 Nov 2014
Posts: 18
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2018 5:25 pm Reply with quote
Xe4 wrote:
Even though I've heard sort of mixed things about Big Fish, I'm still absolutely looking forward to it, if only to support original Chinese animation. As with the director I really hope Chineese animation takes off in a big way, not only monetarily but genre wise as well.


Yeah, it'll be interesting to see what comes of this so-called "dawn of the Chinese animation industry" (according to the China Internet Information Center ... I'll take issue with the phrase, but something's going on good there so why not call it a dawn?) Big Fish & Begonia looks like it takes a lot of its visual influence from anime (Korean studio Studio Mir, who worked on Boondocks and Avatar and Voltron LD, also worked on Big Fish, and IMO you can trace that lineage straight through,) and the trailers seem to be wanting it to be Miyazaki'ish ... but even from the little that I've seen so far, it also looks to be very much its own thing. This is to me a distinctly Chinese style of myth being told, and the graphic design is straight out of wuxia traditions that anime and American animation has tapped but not fully connected to in this way; I'm hoping also to find the character motivations and dialog might strike me as being from a particularly Chinese voice and perspective even though the story is on the surface a mostly familiar family-style fable / love story.

It's of course unlikely that Chinese animation will spawn its own fanbase as dedicated as anime has (we're extremely lucky that we have each other and that there's a fanbase and a news network to keep us looped in, that producers can have good faith audiences to show up when anime hits the air or a screen.) But I want to see good work from China and would be happy to see it catch on. I agree, for the sake of animation and culture, this is a movie to take note of.

(Also, glad ANN decided to review and write it up, even though it's not anime.)
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DangerMouse



Joined: 25 Mar 2009
Posts: 3798
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2018 8:54 pm Reply with quote
This looks really nice.

Hopefully this theater release means it'll eventually get a US Blu-ray since I'd like to see it. Been interested ever since learning about it while reading something else about Studio Mir and then seeing the trailer.
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PFdaCIA



Joined: 01 Apr 2017
Posts: 110
PostPosted: Thu Apr 05, 2018 10:15 pm Reply with quote
Marc Nix wrote:
Xe4 wrote:
Even though I've heard sort of mixed things about Big Fish, I'm still absolutely looking forward to it, if only to support original Chinese animation. As with the director I really hope Chineese animation takes off in a big way, not only monetarily but genre wise as well.


Yeah, it'll be interesting to see what comes of this so-called "dawn of the Chinese animation industry" (according to the China Internet Information Center ... I'll take issue with the phrase, but something's going on good there so why not call it a dawn?) Big Fish & Begonia looks like it takes a lot of its visual influence from anime (Korean studio Studio Mir, who worked on Boondocks and Avatar and Voltron LD, also worked on Big Fish, and IMO you can trace that lineage straight through,) and the trailers seem to be wanting it to be Miyazaki'ish ... but even from the little that I've seen so far, it also looks to be very much its own thing. This is to me a distinctly Chinese style of myth being told, and the graphic design is straight out of wuxia traditions that anime and American animation has tapped but not fully connected to in this way; I'm hoping also to find the character motivations and dialog might strike me as being from a particularly Chinese voice and perspective even though the story is on the surface a mostly familiar family-style fable / love story.

It's of course unlikely that Chinese animation will spawn its own fanbase as dedicated as anime has (we're extremely lucky that we have each other and that there's a fanbase and a news network to keep us looped in, that producers can have good faith audiences to show up when anime hits the air or a screen.) But I want to see good work from China and would be happy to see it catch on. I agree, for the sake of animation and culture, this is a movie to take note of.

(Also, glad ANN decided to review and write it up, even though it's not anime.)


I find this interaction between studios and Chinese investors with South Korean studios far more interesting than studios or Chinese investors trying to create studios in Japan to try to take advantage of the talents there. I read a few years ago of a saying by Makoto Shinkai himself that without the South Koreans, Japanese industry would probably collapse. And this is really true. Especially for great movies. Although Japanese studios try to circumvent foreign outsourcing, they fail and can not do much of the time.

The Koreans are experts, but their home industry is little prestigious. The Chinese want cooperation, and can invest because in the domestic industry they get their return. That must have been the positive factor for Mir Studio getting involved. And they really left their mark. I hope to see more collaborations between this studio and the South Korean studio.

While many may question that Mir may have had a more active role in the work, I say that this may not be so: there are some good animators in China who are emerging in Japanese industry, and some studio directors are relying on some work very important. A good example is that of the Chinese animators, Optical-Core and Juansheng-Shi, who did work on FLCL 3, whose scene was leaked. Take a look later, you might like your styles.

Scene of the two Chinese animators in FLCL 3

https://twitter.com/AshitanoGin/status/980386315542913024

Profile of the animator Optical-Core on Sakugabooru's website highlighting his style

https://www.sakugabooru.com/post?tags=optical-core+

Profile of the animator Juansheng-Shi on Sakugabooru's website highlighting his style

https://www.sakugabooru.com/post?tags=juansheng_shi+
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Rednimue



Joined: 07 Dec 2016
Posts: 106
PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2018 4:52 pm Reply with quote
Is this some kind of sponsored interview by Shout! Factory ?
Because I'm wondering why something that has nothing to do with anime is featured so prominently on ANN.

In any case I'll probably go and watch it on the 11th, I'm a little curious.
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