Although the Chinese ad industry is now cautiously livening up with new film releases, most of which were shot before the outbreak, Covid-19 is still taking its toll. While the outbreak is costing career adjustments for many, some creatives are seizing the opportunity for a boost. Director Le Shuting is a recent example.
Le Shuting 乐舒婷
The young director from Wuhan went from being unknown to being a creator of social ads watched by millions in a short span of two months. Her second short film «Wuhan balconies», released in the end of March, was an instant hit generating over 8 million views on Weibo alone, and nearly a million likes on short video platform Kuaishou.
The 3-minute long video is a mix of virus outbreak struggles, showing reality through un-staged shots of ordinary families, and positive messages without the oversold patriotic feeling you might expect from TV-channel- produced films. Le Shuting shared in an article that she was writing and rewriting video copy for a week, aiming to find the right words to take the focus away from scary news, and show that’s not all Wuhan had turned into under its lockdown.
A Wuhan resident herself, the director put balconies in focus, as, during the quarantine, for many people, they was their only real connection to the outside world. With the words «There can’t be a single feeling behind 9 million stories», the video contrasts the Wuhan that people see from the news with a glimpse of the «lucky, ordinary majority of people» who contributed to the virus fight by staying at home and «cherishing every tomorrow that has come on time».
This is not the first Wuhan film that Le Shuting shot. The young director was commissioned to do «Wuhan balconies» after the film she released in February was a loud success. «Wuhan, We’re Waiting for You» made waves among Chinese netizens, and, obviously became Le Shuting’s professional success.
«Wuhan, We’re Waiting for You»《武汉，我们等你》
The city where the now global pandemic originated is slowly returning to normal life after two months of the most aggressive quarantine measures in China with full lockdown expected to be lifted TOMORROW , April 8.
That’s some hopeful news, and while balcony lifestyle might be over for Wuhan residents, we dare to predict that we’ll see more films like this from around the world, and more talented creatives contributing to virus battle how they can – staying home, and making engaging work that has the ability to keep morale up, and help people to get through to the times when it will be ok to leave the secluded comfort of their homes, and go back into the world.
Joint production 联合出品: M电影频道, Hubei Media Group 湖北广播电视台
Chief Planner 总策划: Wang Pingjiu 王平久
Executive Producer 总制片人: Li Wei 李玮
Producers 制片人: Wang Yan 王岩, Wang Cheng 王程, Cao Xijing 曹曦睛
Director/Copy 导演/文案: Le Shuting 乐书婷
Cinematographers 摄制: Li Junjie 李俊杰, Zheng Jun 郑军
Art Director 艺术指导: Cheng Long 成⻰
Voice over 旁白: Chen Kun/ Zhou Xun 陈坤/周迅