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Vintage animation gets fresh update at exhibition

Updated: 2024-06-14 06:33 ( China Daily )
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Visitors interact with the Window Project artwork. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Vintage films by the Shanghai Animation Film Studio are projected at the Inlet, a new lifestyle hub in Shanghai's Hongkou district, alongside more recent notable animation films from across China.

A Dialogue Beyond Time and Space is an exhibition jointly hosted by Shanghai Animation Film Studio and the HiShorts! Film Festival.

Taking place from June 8 to the end of August, it features some of the "forgotten gems" of animated films by the Shanghai Animation Film Studio, as well as a series of new animation films curated by the HiShorts! Film Festival. It is a leading festival in China featuring short film productions of no more than 40 minutes.

Since its founding in 1957, the animation film studio has created more than 500 feature films.

Some widely beloved productions, such as the Monkey King, have been so popular through the past decades that they conjure treasured childhood memories of different Chinese generations, says Wang Anyi, a staff member of the studio.

"We have selected 36 films from our archives, which are as brilliant as the most beloved classics but are less known to the public because they have had fewer opportunities for projection."

Some of the vintage films, such as the 1963 film Princess Peahen, have been restored with 4K technology, exhibiting vivid colors and fresh brightness.

Also showcased are films selected by the HiShorts! Film Festival. With the first installation launched in Xiamen of Fujian province in 2019, the festival has been held annually, receiving more than 7,000 entries from 118 countries and regions in 2023.

"We have discovered through the festival's past five sessions that the cutting-edge animation filmmakers in China are keen to borrow from traditional Chinese art, such as the Han Dynasty (206 BC-AD 220) brick and stone pictorial reliefs and the Buddhist frescoes of Dunhuang," says Zeng Yiling, a staff member for the festival.

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