TV Guide > TV Highlights

Chinese ¡°Schindler¡± on Air

TUE MAR 27 16:09

The Chinese Woman at the Gunpoint of Gestapo, a drama about the real story of a Chinese woman who risked her life to save many Belgians under Nazi occupation, will be aired on CCTV-1 beginning on March 28.

The story of Qian Xiuling, the true name of the heroine in real life, is still unknown to most Chinese people. But the Belgian people will remember her forever for what she did to save the lives of their countrymen during World War II. The Belgian government has awarded her with honorary titles and even named a street after her.

Back in 1929, Ms. Qian went to Belgium to study and later got married and moved to a small town. In 1939, the war broke out. From then on, Ms. Qian tried to save many anti-Nazi activists taking advantage of the relationship between her family and the local German Administrator.

In April last year, Director Huang Jianzhong went to Brussels to meet Ms. Qian after reading a book of her story. In her nineties, the old lady would say she had already forgotten those heroic deeds and the following honors. But when her husband was mentioned, she was all smiles. She looked so serene that the director was moved and became determined to turn her story into a TV drama as a mark of respect.

Known for his seriousness, Huang tried hard to revive the historical scenes in this drama, paying great attention to details like the costumes of the German soldiers, and the music popular during that time. But the most difficult part was the casting, which included 28 foreign actors and actresses and nearly 2000 amateurs. In fact, Xu Qing, the leading actress, was the only Chinese actress in the cast. She had to communicate with her partners without understanding their language.

Led by Director Huang Jianzhong, the cast and crew spent two months shooting the 16-part series in Belgium. Their efficiency greatly impressed the CEO of the cooperating Belgium film and TV production company. He said the Chinese crew were incredibly efficient and exclaimed that he would need eight months to finish the series without any compromise to the artistic standards.

It is hoped that the drama will spread the moving story and celebrate Sino-Belgian friendship and cultural exchanges.

(by Elaine Zhou)


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