29 Mar 044: What ARE The Chinese Studios Looking For
Taiwanese producer Patrick Huang offers market intel on how to find projects, what the mainland Chinese studios are looking for, and when you shouldn’t do a co-production.
Additionally, Patrick also offers resources to find market intel, projects, producers, and advice.
THREE KEY POINTS
1. PRODUCERS – MARKET INTEL – HOW TO FIND PROJECTS
Granted there are several ways producers find projects. So if you’re a screenwriter – here are some areas you need to check out.
Project Markets: Chiefly, Patrick mentioned he looks for projects that are key production markets. Thus these include Berlinale Co-production Market, Venice Production Bridge, and The Hong Kong Asia Financing Forum. Thus, if you’re a writer, check out various project markets and apply.
Market and Festival seminars and parties. Notably, Patrick has networked at these events. Thus, he found partners and projects. To point out, Patrick mentioned The Pingyao Film Festival and The First Film Festival.
2. WRITERS – HOW TO FIND PRODUCERS
For this reason, Patrick suggests you join the Bridging the Dragon Association. Markedly, BTD is geared toward European and Chinese collaboration. Significantly, the association fosters collaboration between China and producers outside of China.
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3. MARKET INTEL
In particular, Patrick mentioned several ways to gauge the market. To enumerate, this is crucial to decide what script to green light. For Chinese speakers, check out real-time box office apps such as Maoyan or Lighthouse. Another way is to watch Chinese soap operas. Generally speaking, Patrick said watching a local TV series, helps you get a feel for what the audience wants.
1. YOU CAN’T REPEAT OLD FORMULAS
As we say, you can rest on your laurels. For example, because you made a hit documentary doesn’t mean you can repeat that same success. Thus you need to leave your ego out of decision-making. In short, audiences and trends change.
2. MARKET INTEL: WHAT ARE THE CHINESE STUDIOS LOOKING FOR?
- High-concept remakes. However, Patrick found good IP from Korea or Thailand is gone quickly.
- Propaganda films. By and large, Chinese studios have an easier time getting these films made. They focus on uplifting stories about regular people making sacrifices for the group.
- Reality or True stories. For one thing, Chinese audiences are keen on everyday stories that offer hope. An example would be the film Dying to Survive.
3. MARKET INTEL: CO-PRODUCTIONS OR A LOCAL FILM?
Likewise, if you have a great project, you may be better off not doing a co-production. In the first place, focus on your domestic audience. However, If it doesn’t work domestically, it probably won’t work internationally. As an illustration, look at the film Parasite. It portrayed economic gaps in Korean society. Thus, it resonated well. As a result, it became an international hit.
4. MARKET INTEL: RESOURCES
In Particular, check out project markets. Patrick mentioned some great resources you should research.
- Locarno Film: Uniquely they have intensive programs for filmmakers, film critics, and sales execs. Moreover, check out their “Toolbox” page. Furthermore, users can interact with mentors.
- Taiwan Creative Content Agency (TAICCA). Indeed, they incentivize productions with business matching, market intelligence, training for creatives. Additionally, they provide grants and funds.
- Purin Pictures. To clarify, this is a Facebook page. It focuses on Southeast Asian films. They also offer resources you can check out.
China Hollywood Greenlight Podcast – Episode 44
Patrick Mao Huang, Managing Director, Flash Forward Entertainment
Host: Caryn McCann
Twitter: @chnlist https://twitter.com/chnlist
GUEST: Patrick Mao Huang
Managing Director, Producer at Flash Forward Entertainment
Company website – Flash Forward Entertainment: www.ffe.com.tw/international
黃茂昌, 總經理, 製片人前景娛樂有限公司
Co-Production markets mentioned
Berlinale Co-Production Market https://www.efm-berlinale.de/en/copro-market/profile/profile.html
Hong Kong-Asia Film Financing Forum https://industry.hkiff.org.hk/
Chinese Box Office Apps
Mainland Chinese Film festivals mentioned
Pingyao Film Festival: www.pyiffestival.com
First Film Festival: https://www.firstfilm.org.cn/en/
Bridging the Dragon: https://www.bridgingthedragon.com/en/
Taiwan Creative Content Agency (TAICCA) https://en.taicca.tw
SE Asia film resource – Facebook group. Purin Pictures: https://www.facebook.com/purinpictures
Co-Production support / intensive workshops: Locarno Film Festival- https://www.locarnofestival.ch/LFF/home.html
Co-Production advice (Locarno Film Festival) Toolbox: https://toolbox.locarnofestival.ch/login
The Hollywood Reporter: https://www.hollywoodreporter.com
China Film Insider: https://chinafilminsider.com
Writers – Join our membership website – The China List. Upload your first script for free! No credit card is required. Get your script seen in Hollywood and China！ Use this special link: https://chnlist.com/first-script-free/