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Publication and Press Releases
2013
March
"Golden Harvest: A Landmark in Hong Kong Cinema" exhibition at HK Film Archive showcases studio's development
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     The logo of Golden Harvest, which consisted of four red blocks forming the letter "G", became a symbol of the heyday of Hong Kong's film and entertainment industry from the 1970s to the 1990s. Golden Harvest contributed as a pioneering film studio for more than 30 years. Its founders, Mr Raymond Chow, Mr Leonard Ho and Mr T K Leung, with their vision, persistence and some luck, attracted and nurtured talents with a flexible business strategy, and the studio not only produced film trends in multiple genres and was a local distributor, but also expanded its distribution network worldwide and produced Western films, taking Hong Kong cinema to the world arena. Golden Harvest was not merely a success story of entrepreneurship, but a modern legend.

     As a contribution to the 37th Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF), the Hong Kong Film Archive (HKFA) has organised a retrospective on Golden Harvest. From tomorrow (March 23) to July 14, the HKFA's new exhibition "Golden Harvest: A Landmark in Hong Kong Cinema" will see the Exhibition Hall of the HKFA turned into a Golden Harvest cinema showcasing sets of some classic scenes, together with photos, posters and magazines, to offer an overview of Golden Harvest's development. Admission is free.

     The opening ceremony was held today (March 22) at the HKFA. Officiating guests included the Deputy Director (Culture) of Leisure and Cultural Services, Ms Cynthia Liu; co-founder of Golden Harvest Mr Raymond Chow; and the Senior Vice President of Fortune Star Media Limited, the Partner Organisation of the retrospective, Ms Judy Chan.  

     The rise of Golden Harvest was a product of its time, locality and human factors. The three co-founders were all former major executives in the Shaw Brothers studio, and, when establishing Golden Harvest in the 1970s, each had their individual roles and complemented each other. A diplomat, publicity genius and super agent in promoting new talents, Mr Raymond Chow looked after the studio's external and overseas affairs. Mr Leonard Ho, with his excellent people management, was considered a mentor by many artists like Jackie Chan, John Woo and Sammo Hung. An experienced journalist, Mr T K Leung oversaw distribution and publicity for the studio.

     From its birth to the time it became the main pillar of the film industry, the studio had the flexibility to move with changing times. It ushered in trends in multiple film genres from the swordsman and wuxia films at the initial stage and the instant sensation of superstar Bruce Lee, which drove Golden Harvest into overseas markets, to the situation comedy of Michael Hui, which became a major box office draw and played a significant role in popular culture.

     With a flexible operation strategy to outsource production, Golden Harvest encouraged independent production in the form of satellite branches and profit-sharing models, thus attracting talents and raising the quality of products while counteracting the studio's limitations on capital. Golden Harvest produced and financed over 600 films covering an assortment of genres, ranging from action and comedy to artistic films. The company nurtured a number of international superstars and directors such as Bruce Lee, John Woo, Wang Yu, Michael Hui, Jackie Chan, Sammo Hung and others. It sustained the market and the industry with new talents and constant productions, leading to a flourishing scene in Hong Kong cinema in the 1980s. Having established a strong distribution network, Golden Harvest ran its own cinema chain and enhanced collaboration with Western film companies, as well as promoted Hong Kong cinema overseas. It produced almost 20 Western films, taking the company to the international stage with remarkable success.
    
     The "Golden Harvest: A Landmark in Hong Kong Cinema" exhibition remakes a Golden Harvest cinema with different sections, namely "Forever Classics", "The Birth of a Movie Kingdom", "Overseas Harvest", "The Star Factory" and "The Golden Network". Classic scenes of the studio's films and oral history from Raymond Chow, Michael Hui, John Woo, Sammo Hung, Chua Lam, Albert Lee and Louis Sit will be shown to introduce the studio's development and strategies in various areas.

     The exhibition will also feature film scenes of Golden Harvest's renowned artists like Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Michael Hui, Sammo Hung, Yuen Biao, Angela Mao and Nora Miao to showcase their charms on the screen. In addition, early works and interviews of 16 directors including John Woo, Ching Siu-tung, Sammo Hung, Patrick Tam and Yim Ho will be shown to showcase the blossoming era of Hong Kong cinema in the 1980s.

     In addition to the exhibition, the screening programme in the retrospective "The Cinematic Matrix of Golden Harvest" will be held from today to June 30. Sixty-three films including "The Big Boss" (1971), "Fist of Fury" (1972), "The Young Master" (1980), "The Invincible Eight" (1971), "Beach of the War Gods" (1973), "The Himalayan" (1976), "The Private Eyes" (1976), "The Sword" (1980), "A Fishy Story" (1989), "All in the Family" (1975), "Plain Jane to the Rescue" (1982), "The Soong Sisters" (1997), "Summer Snow" (1995), "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" (1990) and "Boys in Company C" (1978) will be shown.

     The retrospective is being held with the assistance of Fortune Star Media Limited, enabling the HKFA to access 58 of Golden Harvest's films, with 40 of them having been converted from digitally remastered copies into DCP. Fortune Star has also agreed to the long-term preservation of these screening prints at the HKFA. Seventeen of the titles in the retrospective will be shown in part one during the HKIFF from now to April 1, while the second phase of screenings will show 58 films from April 4 to June 30. All of these screenings will be held at the Cinema of the HKFA.

     Tickets for all screenings are now available at URBTIX outlets. Tickets priced at $40 with half-price concessionary tickets are available for senior citizens aged 60 and above, people with disabilities and their minders, full-time students and Comprehensive Social Security Assistance recipients. Credit card bookings can be made at 2111 5999 and Internet bookings at www.urbtix.hk .

     To supplement the screenings and exhibition, four seminars, to be conducted in Cantonese with free admission, will be held at the HKFA. Co-founder of Golden Harvest Mr Raymond Chow will grace the retrospective by talking in the first seminar entitled "The Mastermind Behind: Raymond Chow" at 2.30pm tomorrow (March 23), while four critics, Mr Stephen Teo, Mr Lam Chiu-wing, Mr Thomas Shin and Mr Lau Yam, will talk in the "Genres Explorations of Golden Harvest" seminar at 2.30pm on March 30. Another exciting seminar will see two senior film company executives, Mr Albert Lee and Ms Winnie Tsang, joining a discussion entitled "International Visions of Golden Harvest" at 2.30pm on April 6. To drill more into the Hui brothers' achievements in the 1970s, director Michael Hui and critic Mr Thomas Shin will join a seminar entitled "Aspirations of the Hui Brothers" at 4.30pm on April 20. Post-screening talks are also planned to be hosted by film critics and directors including Yim Ho, Alfred Cheung, Fruit Chan and Mabel Cheung.

     In addition, the HKFA's new publication "Golden Harvest: Leading Change in Changing Times", focusing on the characteristics of Golden Harvest productions, priced at $140 and with English edition on CD-ROM, will be released in late March.

     Detailed programme information can be found in "ProFolio 67" or the 37th HKIFF booking folder distributed at all performing venues of the LCSD. For programme enquiries, please call 2739 2139 or 2734 2900, or browse the webpage at www.lcsd.gov.hk/ce/CulturalService/filmprog/english/2013gh/2013gh_index.html .

Ends/Friday, March 22, 2013
Issued at HKT 19:24

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The opening ceremony of the "Golden Harvest: A Landmark in Hong Kong Cinema" exhibition was held tonight (March 22) at the Hong Kong Film Archive (HKFA). Photo shows guests at the opening ceremony (from left): the Deputy Director (Culture) of Leisure and Cultural Services, Ms Cynthia Liu; co-founder of Golden Harvest Mr Raymond Chow; and the Senior Vice President of Fortune Star Media Limited, the Partner Organisation of the retrospective, Ms Judy Chan.

5105A1E9EC56449ABD925897C4D21EF5_B.JPG

The "Golden Harvest: A Landmark in Hong Kong Cinema" exhibition turns the HKFA Exhibition Hall into a Golden Harvest cinema showcasing sets of some classic scenes, together with photos, posters and magazines, to offer an overview of Golden Harvest's development.

61242BFF0AE641979FB81DBADDD0E257_B.JPG

The "Golden Harvest: A Landmark in Hong Kong Cinema" exhibition turns the HKFA Exhibition Hall into a Golden Harvest cinema showcasing sets of some classic scenes, together with photos, posters and magazines, to offer an overview of Golden Harvest's development.

868FF4AD470E4CD28C647214F22A5DD4_B.JPG

The "Golden Harvest: A Landmark in Hong Kong Cinema" exhibition turns the HKFA Exhibition Hall into a Golden Harvest cinema showcasing sets of some classic scenes, together with photos, posters and magazines, to offer an overview of Golden Harvest's development.

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A film still of the opening film, "The Way of the Dragon" (1972).

 

 

 

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