Behind the Scenes－January, 2017
Behind the Scenes－January, 2017 - Taipei Film Commission
At the end of every year, Taipei Film Commission (TFC) reviews its Location & Production operations to better understand the latest development in Taiwan’s audio-visual industry. From January to November in 2016, compared with the same period the previous year, TFC assisted 25 more productions, including TV shows, commercials, music videos, student short films, and web series. However, there were fewer feature films and international co-productions, which reflects the relatively unsatisfactory performance of the Taiwanese film industry in 2016 - something worth the attention of government authorities and filmmakers.
TFC also updated the number of available filming locations in Taipei, which is currently 162. The most popular location in the past month was Beitou Chinese Movie Studio. On one weekend, a Chinese-funded web series and a TV series overlapped on this location on the same day. The two productions were each scheduled to occupy the morning and the afternoon. However, the morning crew did not finish their filming before the afternoon crew arrived. Fortunately, both productions were able to complete their work thanks to TFC’s negotiations. Because of the increasing number of Chinese web series filming in Taiwan, after solving the scheduling conflict of the two productions above, there are three other productions applying for long periods of filming, which are still being negotiated. As many productions have asked us whether there are other locations in Taipei with a deserted quality like Beitou Chinese Movie Studio, we know that it has been a great loss to the industry since Nangang Bottle Cap Factory became unavailable. Because of the popularity of Beitou Chinese Movie Studio, TFC has committed tremendous efforts and resources to maintaining the security and integrity of the location.
This month, season 2 of TV series Wake Up moved production to Taipei. Because season 1 of the series performed well at the Golden Bell Awards, two actors, Lego Lee and Summer Meng has been added to the main cast. The show’s locations in Taipei include Ximending and Taipei Metro. For post-disaster scenes, because a part of the crew was delayed in southern parts of Taiwan, TFC had to step in and coordinate with the Police Department, the Fire Department, and Taipei Metro. Fortunately, TFC has long been partners with these agencies and has developed mutual trust. With the show’s reputation from its first season and the complete information the crew submitted this time, filming for Wake Up season 2 went very smoothly in Taipei. Filming of the music video for “Dat Beatboxer” also took place in Taipei on Songgao Road, with traffic control. Although filming commenced in the wee hours of the night, because this was the first time for a traffic control operation to have traffic lights switched to flashing mode, it was discovered on-site that there had to be road closure to ensure traffic safety. As closing the road late and reopening the road early would both affect traffic safety, this case has become an essential experience for future production assistance at TFC.
TFC also reviewed the “Taipei Film Production Lessons” in November, which took place across 11 colleges in Taipei. Throughout the lecture tour, the students learned a great deal from the practical experiences shared. Even TFC’s Location & Production crew and the film producers who lectured on the tour found the program very beneficial to them as well. Reportedly, this year’s lectures were mostly attended by freshman and sophomore students. Because they were unfamiliar with film production and had never taken related classes, they contributed less to discussions during the lecture, only waiting until after a session to ask lecturers questions. On the other hand, students who had produced films previously or registered to the lectures out of their own interest, engaged very actively. Because of mutual learning, the lecturers also gained a great sense of achievement. They adjusted their lesson plan after each session based on student reactions, and they fully enjoyed their work. Currently, we have received an increased number of student applications to production assistance, and there have been students from southern parts of Taiwan messaging TFC on Facebook requesting future opportunities to join the lectures. In addition, teachers from outside the 11 participating colleges have also voiced their desire to join the “Taipei Film Production Lessons”.