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When will Chinese filmmakers win an Oscar statuette?

academy awards, Oscar statuette

The 88th Academy Awards, once again thrilled people around the world, including the Chinese, who were excited about Leonardo DiCaprio winning the Best Actor award.


But the annual carnival also put Chinese filmmakers in an awkward position, as no Chinese films have ever pocketed a golden trophy. The hard truth leaves people wondering when the nation, which is already the second largest film market, will earn a place in the renowned award ceremony's spotlight.


The circumstance for domestic artists is similar to that of Chinese writers and scientists before Mo Yan and Tu Youyou won Nobel Prize in 2012 and 2015 respectively.


Just as Chinese people are accustomed to seeing their fellow citizens taking home Nobel prizes from Stockholm, it is time for them to see that winning an Oscar is also achievable.


There are good reasons to be optimistic about such an ambitious outlook.


First, China is one of the fastest growing film markets in the world, attracting abundant capital from home and abroad, which will prompt more talented people to get into the industry.


Latest statistics showed Chinese cinemas took a record 6.87 billion yuan (about 1.05 billion U.S. dollars) in ticket sales in February, with the monthly box office overtaking that of North America for the first time.


The achievement, which may be repeated in the future, has led to speculation that China's annual box office could go on to surpass North America as soon as 2017.


As capital rushes into the Chinese film industry, fierce competition is expected. The creativity and quality of homegrown movies, two outstanding shortcomings compared with Hollywood productions, will be improved.


Second, Chinese culture and stories have provided a rich source of inspiration for domestic productions. For example, the highest grossing animations in China are the "Kung Fu Panda" series and "Monkey King" films.


Once they master cutting-edge film technology and improve narration, Chinese filmmakers could see their potential unleashed.


Also showing promise is the younger generation of filmmakers, who are born after 1970. With more professional and international training compared with their predecessors, such as acclaimed director Zhang Yimou, they are equipped to make breakthroughs.


Young directors, who often travel to the United States and Europe for seminars and award ceremonies, are also more familiar with Hollywood productions.


One recent example, domestic drama "Mr. Six" is rated 8.2 out of 10 on douban.com, a major online website for films, achieving higher marks than many international renowned films including "Gravity," which gets 7.8 on the same website.


This being said, no one can predict the exact year when a homegrown film will stun the world.


Patience is gold for domestic filmmakers.



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