Call for Papers: The Inaugural Conference of the Association for Chinese Animation Studies, Zoom, Spring 2021  

The inaugural conference of the Association for Chinese Animation Studies (ACAS), originally scheduled to be held at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in May 2020, is highly likely to be conducted virtually via Zoom from Feb to May in 2021. The virtual panels will be scheduled on weekends when we are free … Continue reading Call for Papers: The Inaugural Conference of the Association for Chinese Animation Studies, Zoom, Spring 2021  

CGI Ink-Painting Animation in Contemporary China, 1989-2019

Chen Hailu; translated by Yixing Li  From 1961 to 1988, Chinese animators at the Shanghai Animation Film Studio produced four traditional ink-painting animated films, winning numerous accolades at home and abroad. No new ink-painting animation had been produced since 1989. It was not until 2003 that ink-painting animation resurfaced in China with the production of … Continue reading CGI Ink-Painting Animation in Contemporary China, 1989-2019

An Interview with Scissor Seven Director He Xiaofeng

Interviewed by Ma Xiaogua and Bi Fang (Anim-babblers Study Group); translated by Nick Stember Scissor Seven(2018) has become the first Chinese animated series ever to sign a Netflix Original distribution deal and be rebroadcast on the online streaming giant. According to official sources, Netflix will be deploying a fleet of pro dubbers to create English, Japanese, … Continue reading An Interview with Scissor Seven Director He Xiaofeng

The Ambiguous Superhero in Wan Laiming’s Havoc in Heaven

Olga Bobrowska “Look how nice it is to be Monkey King. No parents, no control. Just do as he will. And no shifts of WTO (World Trade Organization),” says Guo Binbin, a tragically passionless hero in Jia Zhangke’s film Unknown Pleasures (2002). Binbin is an unemployed 19-year-old who does not dare to kiss his teenaged … Continue reading The Ambiguous Superhero in Wan Laiming’s Havoc in Heaven

Chinese Diasporic Life: A Review of Bao

Shannon Brownlee California-based Pixar Animation Studio is not, at first glance, a likely producer of Chinese animation. However, Bao (Domee Shi, 2018) proves otherwise (Fig 1).[1]As Disney and Pixar’s opening logos appear, they are accompanied – even eclipsed – by the strings of the guzheng, then pipa and erhu, playing a pentatonic theme. The film’s … Continue reading Chinese Diasporic Life: A Review of Bao

The Question of Hong Kong Identity in My Life As McDull

Lokyi Tsoi My Life As McDull is the first attempt to make a full-length animation film of the McDull series, as a collaboration with director Toe Yuen, screenplay writer Brian Tse, and story writer Alice Mak (Fig 1). Released in Hong Kong during Chinese New Year 2001-2002, the film achieved remarkable success, grossing a total of … Continue reading The Question of Hong Kong Identity in My Life As McDull

Visual Effects and the Enchanted Technique of Elements: A Review of Ne Zha

Hang Wu Animation renders visible the nonhuman energy that is otherwise hidden. The visualization of this nonhuman affective energy is exemplified by the animated feature film Ne Zha (2019), which reaches its climax during the fight of fire vs. water between Ne Zha and Ao Bing. As Ne Zha was born with the power of … Continue reading Visual Effects and the Enchanted Technique of Elements: A Review of Ne Zha

Next Gen: Out-of-control “Prototype Memory” in a Futuristic Machine City

Maggie Chunning Guo The animated film Next Gen, released in 2019, presents a series of dualisms, such as stereotypes of humans vs. machines and the dilemma of deleting memories vs. unloading weapons. These confrontations lead to a war between the humans and machines, climaxing in a final fight between the robot “7723” and Justin Pin, … Continue reading Next Gen: Out-of-control “Prototype Memory” in a Futuristic Machine City