The TV series "Bitter City", which is currently being broadcast on CCTV8, brings the theme of the East Zhejiang War of Resistance to the screen for the first time.
Sun Yang, the chief producer of the play, introduced that the main creator of the play took 3 years to create, restoring the heroic stories of the soldiers of the New Fourth Army.
The play reproduces the sensational patriotic act of Ningbo merchants collectively sinking ships, blocking the Yongjiang Estuary, and preventing Japanese warships from invading Zhenhai Port;
Museum Records Inspire Creation Themes
"City of Bravery" is directed by Qi Xing, written by Qi Xing, Hao Gang, and Wang Hui, and starring Xu Jia, Wang Wenqi, Qi Kui, Guo Jiaming, Zhang Luyao, Feng Guoqiang, etc.
The play focuses on Zhenhai, Ningbo, and tells the story of the increasingly severe situation of the Anti-Japanese War in Eastern Zhejiang in 1940. Communist Party member Xiao Han was ordered by his superiors to return to his hometown, Ningbo Zhenhai, to develop his armed forces, and to establish and strengthen Eastern Zhejiang in the battle. The story of the anti-Japanese base area.
In terms of creation, "Dare to Fight" follows the principle of "the big things are true, and the small things are not limited", and organically integrates the revolutionary historical events and the fictional plots of the film and television in the play.
Sun Yang, the chief producer of the play, has more than 40 years of industry experience, and has created works such as "Exit", "Fire Blue Blade" and "Hot Blood Flag".
Talking about the original intention of "Dare to Fight", Sun Yang said that he found a record of an anti-Japanese defense war that took place in Zhenhai, Ningbo in the 1940s in a museum in Ningbo three years ago.
Previously, few literary and artistic works focused on the anti-Japanese battlefield in eastern Zhejiang. This discovery gave Sun Yang the idea of bringing this history to the screen.
Dig deep into the story of the merchant shipwreck and the enemy
After the theme was determined, Sun Yang organized the creative team to collect historical stories of the Zhenhai Anti-Japanese Defense War, and with the help of the local government, found two veterans who had participated in the defense war.
The two old men are both in their nineties, but they can still talk freely when they talk about that year.
Sun Yang was very moved by the interview with the two veterans, "It can be said that they gave us full enthusiasm for creation."
After a series of in-depth excavations, Sun Yang and the creative team enriched the historical content of the TV series, such as the inhumane germ warfare of the Japanese invaders and the rescue of the Allied pilots by the New Fourth Army, etc. These events all happened in Ningbo.
Sun Yang was particularly moved by a real event in historical records: At that time, almost every merchant in Ningbo had merchant ships, as many as two or three, and as few as one. When facing foreign humiliation, these merchants united and chose at all costs. Blocked the waterway by sinking ships to resist the fleet of Japanese invaders. "If one ship fails, two ships will sink. If two ships fail, one fleet will sink. A total of more than 100 ships will be sunk in Jianghaikou. These are merchants. It is an asset to settle down and live, but in order to defend their home and country, they did not hesitate to choose this way of strong men cutting off their wrists. These real historical events have given us a good basis and inspiration for our creation.”
Adhere to the authentic presentation of on-site shooting
After doing a lot of pre-interview work, Sun Yang and the creative team determined a story outline. In the play, the image of a wealthy businessman in Ningbo was set. The entanglement of different characters leads to grand historical war scenes.
Sun Yang then found director Qi Xing, who had had two pleasant collaborations with him, to direct "Dare to Fight" and serve as the screenwriter. "After Director Qi sorted out, this story came to life."
"Bitter City" is based on major historical events such as the "Southern Anhui Incident" and "Eastern Zhejiang Campaign". It is created on the basis of a series of in-depth investigations such as a large number of historical facts and on-site visits to the original site, giving history a vivid story image and Character style.
Filming such an anti-Japanese war drama can be completed in three months by the crew stationed in Hengdian, but Sun Yang still hopes to restore some Ningbo characteristics in the drama, "The scenery in Hengdian is still different from the actual shooting in Ningbo. I hope to present the original Ningbo characteristics as much as possible.” As a result, nearly two-thirds of the scenes of the entire crew were completed in Ningbo. “The old houses we are looking for have never appeared in TV series before. I believe it will give everyone a refreshing feeling." (Reporter Qiu Wei)
(Source: Beijing Daily, Page 12, December 7, 2022)