Wang Jiequn, Deputy Director of the Publicity Department of Beijing Municipal CPC Committee and Director of the Beijing Municipal Film Administration: Building a Film Power with Beijing’s Efforts
The year of 2020 marked the pandemic and changes of a kind unseen in a century. In the face of severe challenges and egregious difficulties, the CPC Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping at its core exercised overall leadership and rallied all people across the country to surmount difficulties with composure and determination. By doing so, we have achieved a remarkable outcome that is recognized by our people, startled the world, and deserves a place in history.
China’s film industry also presented acceptable fruition amid the pandemic. The industry has strictly followed the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, especially the his important instructions on film, and carried out relevant work in the right direction based on overall development picture. We have released a slew of popular and excellent films such as My People, My Homeland, Coffee or Tea, and Leap to lead the resumption of the film industry worldwide. With a wide range of film genres, the box office during the Spring Festival hit a new record, which epitomizes the continuous growth of the international competitiveness of Chinese film.
At the national film work conference this year, Minister Wang Xiaohui thought highly of the outstanding achievements of the industry in 2020, accurately summarized the shortcomings of the sector, and analyzed the new situation under the regular virus prevention and control. He also noted the specific goals and requirements of building a film power. His ambitious speech with accurate data is of theoretical importance, which is also targeted and operable. Personally, it is not only a comprehensive work arrangement, but also a useful lesson. I am fully motivated and encouraged.
Beijing, as the capital, is the national center of politics, culture, international exchanges and scientific and technological innovation. It is a metropolis with a population of more than 21 million people. After the onset of the pandemic, under the strong leadership of the CPC Central Committee, the Beijing Municipal Party Committee and the Municipal Government, the film industry in Beijing came in solidarity to overcome all difficulties, spared no effort to promote film creation and innovation and development of the film industry, and achieved prodigious results.
Work hard and unite as one to fight the pandemic.
We have put in place Measures to Promote the Healthy Development of Cultural Enterprises and other support policies to help film and television enterprises jump out of predicament. We launched the Beijing Publicity and Culture Guidance Fund, provided support funds of 100 million yuan, reduced and exempted various fees totaling 130 million yuan, put aside 20 million yuan from the film special fund for anti-epidemic subsidy. With all these efforts, the safe and orderly operation of Beijing’s film and television industry was ensured.
Targeted efforts of prevention and control to stabilize the market. 23 versions of 9 work guidelines for the industry’s virus containment were issued, and the policies and regulations for resuming work and production were strictly implemented. The promotion event of “10 Million Yuan Subsidy for Film” was conducive to the recovery of the film market. In 2020, the total box office of Beijing totaling 1.033 billion yuan ranked second among the cities across the country. And Beijing occupied 6 places among the top 10 cinemas in the national annual box office.
Work together to create high-quality films and strive to make new achievements. With the advantages of organization, we created 185 films around important themes such as building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, ranking top nationwide in terms of output. The top five films at the box office in China were all produced in Beijing. High quality films like My People, My Homeland, Leap, and Coffee or Tea procured great success in both reputation and box office. Hi, Mom, Detective Chinatown 3, and New Gods: NeZha Reborn led the market during the Spring Festival period, while the creation of films for celebrating the centenary of the founding of the CPC such as Revolutionary, The Battle at Lake Changjin and Sniper is accelerated.
Seek breakthroughs to hold BJIFF online. A number of online trainings were held, such as the introduction of bail-out and development policies, the management of commercial cinemas, and the business skills of rural projectionists. The national launching ceremony of the theme screening activities of public welfare films, "Struggling for a Century, Embarking on a New Journey", was held online and offline simultaneously, expanding the influence of the industry. The 10th Beijing International Film Festival (BJIFF), a successful event, highlighted its online feature and offered a high-standard film event to the world.
2021 marks the centenary of the founding of the CPC and the first year of the 14th Five-Year Plan. The industry in the capital should work in line with the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, put film in an important position throughout the whole publicity and ideological work, make full use of the profound cultural foundation and highly concentrated film and talent resources, and hold high the Beijing awareness and standard, thus contributing Beijing's efforts to building a film power
To that end, we must act in accordance with the political requirements and steadfastly keep the film related work in the right direction. We must follow the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, further strengthen our consciousness of the need to maintain political integrity, think in big-picture terms, follow the leadership core, and keep in alignment with the central Party leadership, stay confident in the path, theory, system, and culture of socialism with Chinese characteristics, and uphold General Secretary Xi Jinping’s core position on the Party Central Committee and in the Party as a whole, and uphold the Party Central Committee’s authority and its centralized, unified leadership. We must fulfill our duty in ideological work and ensure the well function of the film industry. Bearing in mind the great mission and social responsibility of film, we should remain unrelenting to the direction of advanced socialist culture, and put socialist core values throughout film creation, production and management. We are supposed to actively advocate mainstream film creation, persist in serving the people and socialism, encourage diversity, carry forward positive and moral values, and steer clear of vulgarity. We ought to attach great importance to film criticism. We will promote criticism of major theme works by standardizing content and professional training, and strengthen the demonstration and leading role of high-quality works with authoritative, objective and accurate comments, so as to draw more public attention and enhance social influence of mainstream works.
In order to make contribution to building a film power with Beijing’s efforts, we must continue the high-quality film project and strive to create masterpieces. We will optimize the strategic planning, strengthen the top-level design, improve the Beijing Film Creation Plan from 2018 to 2022, and make more efforts to implement high-quality film project. Meanwhile, we will strengthen the training, discovery, publicity, encouragement and introduction of outstanding film talents, encourage internationally renowned talents to set up studios and workstations in Beijing, and promote the training to cultivate famous filmmakers and masters. In addition, we will focus realistic works and propel filmmakers to create more significant films with great artistic value and social influence so as to record the times. To mark the important events such as the centenary of the founding of the CPC, the 20th National Congress of the CPC as well as the Beijing 2022 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, we have well prepared the creation and production of major theme films like Revolutionary, Huoshenshang and Sniper.
Giving top priority to social benefits, we must meet the diverse cultural needs of the people to make contribution to building a film power with Beijing's efforts. Only in this way can we develop the film industry, combine social benefits with economic benefits, and benefit our people with the fruitful outcomes of the film industry. First, we must optimize the layout of urban and rural areas. We will push forward structural reforms on the supply side to further stimulate the vitality of film resources. In addition, we will strengthen targeted support of special funds for films, implement the subsidy policy for the construction of multiplex, and create a film screening pattern, featuring comprehensive coverage, reasonable distribution, and advanced facilities, which can benefit both urban and rural areas. We will give full play to the leading role of the government, tap potential of the rural market, and promote the optimization and upgrading of rural screenings. Second, we must improve the service system. We will optimize the public cultural service system in urban and rural areas. On the premise of ensuring the basic attributes of public service, we will encourage all kinds of social entities to participate in the investment and operation of film public service screenings, encourage coordinated modes of public service screenings and commercial screenings, and promote cinema companies and screening teams to carry out commercial screenings. At the same time, we will explore a new distribution and projection mode and develop the secondary market. Third, we must tap consumption potential. We will extend the industrial chain, actively guide film and television consumption, and promote online and offline mutual supplement. We will make full use of platforms such as China National Film Museum and the National Centre for the Performing Arts of China to run the event of "Film Festival Every Week", support the development of the Capital Star Art Film Theater Alliance, and continue to carry out the event of “10 Million Yuan Subsidy for Film” to encourage film watching.
Meanwhile, we will continue to persist in innovation-based development to build a film power with Beijing’s efforts. By doing so, China will become a film and television focus with great influence worldwide. Innovation, as the fundamental driver for film industry, will advance high quality and rapid development of the industry in Beijing. We will prepare the Five-Year Action Plan for the Development of Beijing Film Industry in a scientific way, continue to improve the "1 + N + X" industrial policy system, and strive to build Beijing into a film and television center for creation, high-tech film and television post-production, high-end film and television resource and audio-visual industry. In addition, with a focus on integrated development, we will foster the further collaborative innovation of Beijing-Tianjin-Hebei film and television industry, promote the integration of culture, science, technology, tourism and finance in the film and television field, support the intensive and diversified development of film and television parks (bases), and accelerate the transformation and upgrading of Huairou District Movie and Television Base of Beijing, China (Beijing) Star Park Audio-visual Industry Base and China (Beijing) Film and Television Translation & Production Base. We will also optimize the business environment, implement the notification commitment system for government services, explore the application of new technologies such as big data, 5G, 8K, blockchain and electronic license, and continuously improve the efficiency of review and approval. New innovation will made to improve the service mechanism of talent training so as to establish a practical growth platform for outstanding young film talents, and provide a green channel of settling-down. We will make activity brands such as the BJIFF and Beijing Documentary Week stronger, and promote quality-oriented, professional and international development with unique features. Responding to the national “Belt and Road” Initiative, we encourage film companies to expand overseas markets, and tell good Chinese stories and Beijing stories.
Remaining true to our original aspiration, we must be full aware of the hardship of our mission; Pursuing our dreams, we must be dauntless and tenacious in the path. As we are in the special era of achieving the two centenary goals, we must follow the guidance of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era, implement the guiding principles of the Party’s 19th National Congress and the second, third, and fourth plenary sessions of its 19th Central Committee in full, remain true to our original aspiration for film industry, and actively shoulder the responsibility of Chinese film. By doing so, we can build China into a film power with Beijing’s efforts and celebrate the centenary of the founding of the CPC with remarkable achievements.