By CCTV.com Panview editor team
Editor’s foreword: "Looking China" International Youth Film Project is co-organized by the Academy for International Communication of Chinese Culture (AICCC), Beijing Normal University and Huilin Foundation, which aims to showcase the contrasting simplicity and glamour, the antiquity and fashion of China through unique perspectives of young foreign film makers.
As of the year 2016, 101 students from 25 countries were invited to participate in the project. They were stationed in 13 municipality, provinces and autonomous regions here in China. Every filmmaker has worked out a 10-minute short film about Chinese culture around the topic of “ethnic minority”.
The film, Palace Lantern: Light of Hope, directed by Worawut Phukhokway, highlights the glorious background of Beijing’s palace wooden lanterns and how manufacturers of such products are struggling in the current business climate.
On camera, many young Beijingers declared their love for palace lanterns that they see in luxury hotels, homes, as well as at the Forbidden City and Summer Palace.
Yet, there’s at least one factory in China’s capital city that continues to do wooden handicrafts and makes exquisite lanterns.
The factory boss, interviewed on camera, feels downtrodden. He started work at the factory in 1979, which had over 300 full-time employees. But now, he’s working with 10 colleagues.
The demise of the factory could be due to poor planning and management after the company was privatized in 1990. After privatization, they appeared to be not quite capable of marketing and their sales campaigns were not successful enough.
Yes, they have done an outstanding job making lanterns, but when there are no customers, they must reduce staff and face the brink of bankruptcy.
Nonetheless, the boss will keep the factory open even if it loses more money, since he hopes the younger generation will want to learn more about palace lanterns in the future.
(The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Panview or CCTV.com)
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