Television production celebrates Great Sage

By Zhang Chunyan in London ( China Daily ) Updated: 2015-10-22 09:39:03

Television production celebrates Great Sage

Filming of the documentary, a joint Chinese­-British television production, began at a ceremony marking the 2,565th anniversary of the philosopher's birth. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Confucius had its world premiere in London on Wednesday during President Xi Jinping's state visit.

The 90-­minute documen­tary is a joint production by China Central Television, Lion Television of the United Kingdom, China Internation­al TV Corp and Shandong Mass Media Group.

Confucius provides an objective overview of the life, ideology and influence of the Chinese philosopher, who was born on Sept 28, 551BC and became known to later generations as the Great Sage.

His teachings have had a profound influence on Chi­nese civilization and form an essential part of traditional Chinese culture.

"The documentary Confu­cius not only presents a mem­orable, classic production but also explores a new model of China-­UK historical docu­mentary coproduction," said Guo Weimin, deputy director of China's State Council Information Office, at the ceremony at Lancaster House.

Cultural exchanges play an important role in deepening mutual understanding between the people of China and the UK, Guo said.

The documentary explores Confucius and his teachings as it recounts his life, the leg­end surrounding him, his philosophy, legacy and rele­vance today.

"Through in­depth analy­sis and anecdotes, and mak­ing use of animations and re­enactments, the docu­mentary presents, in a way that's accessible to interna­tional audiences, the man long acknowledged by the world as a great thinker, edu­cator and politician," said Li Ting, CCTV deputy editor­-in-­chief.

Li said that CCTV and Lion TV in the UK began work on Confucius in September 2013 with a series of symposiums and the beginning of script­ writing.

Filming began on Sept 28, 2014, with CCTV cameras at the ceremony marking the 2,565th anniversary of Confu­cius' birth.

Later, the crew visited the United States, the UK and Chinese locations including Shandong, Hebei, Sichuan and Guangdong provinces, the Xinjiang Uygur autono­mous region and Beijing for research, interviews and film­ing.

They traveled to Confucius' birthplace, Mount Nishan, where the local people described his enduring influ­ence on their daily lives.

The team also explored sev­eral Han-­dynasties-­era (206BC-­AD220) tombs to uncover clues about the celebrated meeting between Confucius and Lao-­tzu.

"With the cooperation in producing the documentary Confucius as an excellent starting point, CCTV hopes to further strengthen and expand its cooperation with British media and production companies in the production, filming and purchasing of tel­evision programs, in the expectation that this will con­tribute significantly to the broader cultural exchange between China and the UK," Li said.


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