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Shadow Magic ()

directed by
featuring Jared Harris, Xia Yu, Liu Peiqi, Lu Liping, Yufei Xing

Chinese-born, American-based director Ann Hu debuts with this epic historical drama about the introduction of motion pictures to China during the beginning of the 20th century. The film is based on a true story of Liu Jung (Xia Yu), a Peking photographer who struggles to start a film industry in China in spite of the strong anti-Western sentiment of the time. At the film's outset, Liu Jung is scolded by his autocratic boss Master Ren (Liu Peiqi) for his obsession with Western gizmos after he brings home a junked Victrola. During a photo session with China's most famous opera star, Lord Tan (Li Yusheng), Liu Jung runs into Raymond Wallace (Jared Harris), a mysterious Brit who is hell-bent on introducing movies (called "shadow magic") to the Emperor. As soon as Liu Jung sees his first frame, he is hooked on the medium and committed to Wallace's scheme. This film was screened at the 2000 Sundance Film Festival. Jonathan Crow, Rovi Hide synopsis

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