This article was written By John Berra on 17 Aug 2011, and is filed under Announcements.

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About John Berra

John Berra is a lecturer in Film and Language Studies at Renmin University of China. He is the editor of the Directory of World Cinema: Japan (2010/12/15); co-editor of World Film Locations: Beijing (2012); and co-editor of World Film Locations: Shanghai (2014). His work has appeared in The End: An Electric Sheep Anthology (2011), Electric Shadows: A Century of Chinese Cinema (2014) and Ozu International: Essays on the Global Influences of a Japanese Auteur (2015).

Call for Contributors – World Film Locations: Beijing

Co-editors Dr. John Berra (Nanjing University) and Dr. Liu Yang (Nanjing University) seek suitable contributors for World Film Locations: Beijing, a forthcoming addition to the World Film Locations series from Intellect Books.

The city continues to play a central role in a multitude of films, helping us to frame our understanding of place and of the world around us. Whether as elaborate directorial love-letters or as time-specific cultural settings, the city acts as a vital character in helping to tell a story. These observations have inspired World Film Locations, a series which not only aims to explore how the cinema is helping to shape our view of the city, but also to examine the role of the city in film and how can we engage with various urban cultures through the medium of cinema. Volumes scheduled for publication in 2011 include London, Los Angeles, New York, Paris and Tokyo.

Each entry in the World Film Locations series will explore and reveal the relationship between the city and the cinema by using a predominantly visual approach. Each book will be illustrated with evocative screen-grabs complimented by concise analysis of key scenes and essays that consider individual film-makers, themes and key historical periods relating to each individual city.

As with other volumes in the series, World Film Locations: Beijing will be comprised of scene reviews (250 words) that discuss the content of a specific scene from a key Beijing film, and longer spotlight essays (800-1,000 words) that cover broader topics in more detail.

International titles of the films that we would like to include in this volume as scene reviews are as follows:

  • A Beautiful Life (Andrew Lau, 2011)
  • Beijing Bastards (Zhang Yuan, 1993)
  • Beijing Bicycle (Wang Xiaoshuai, 2001)
  • Beijing Bubbles (George Lindt & Susanne Messmer, 2005)
  • Beijing Taxi (Miao Wang, 2010)
  • Big Shot’s Funeral (Feng Xiaogang, 2001)
  • Black Snow (Xie Fei, 1990)
  • The Blue Kite (Tian Zhuangzhuang, 1993)
  • Bumming in Being (Wu Wenguang, 1990)
  • Cala, My Dog! (Xuechang Lu, 2003)
  • Cell Phone (Feng Xiaogang, 2003)
  • Chung Kuo – Cina (Michelangelo Antonioni, 1972)
  • The Concrete Revolution (Xiaolu Guo, 2004)
  • Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (Ang Lee, 2000)
  • Curse of the Golden Flower (Zhang Yimou, 2006)
  • The Days (Wang Xiaoshuai, 1993)
  • Dirt (Guan Hu, 1994)
  • East Palace, West Palace (Zhang Yuan, 1996)
  • Enter the Clowns (Cui Zien, 2002)
  • Farewell My Concubine (Chen Kaige, 1993)
  • Fish and Elephant (Li Yu, 2001)
  • Forever Enthralled (Chen Kaige, 2008)
  • Frozen (Wang Xiaoshuai, 1997)
  • Fortune Teller (Tong Xu, 2010)
  • Go Lala Go! (Jinglei Xu, 2010)
  • Green Tea (Zhang Yuan, 2003)
  • How is Your Fish Today? (Xiaolu Guo, 2006)
  • If You Are the One 2 (Feng Xiaogang, 2010)
  • I Love Beijing (Ning Ying, 2000)
  • In the Heat of the Sun (Jiang Wen, 1994)
  • Keep Cool (Zhang Yimou, 1997)
  • Lan Yu (Stanley Kwan, 2001)
  • The Last Emperor (Bernardo Bertolucci, 1987)
  • Lost and Found (Ma Liwen, 2008)
  • Lost in Beijing (Li Yu, 2007)
  • M. Butterfly (David Cronenberg, 1993)
  • Meishi Street (Ning Ou, 2006)
  • Mid-Afternoon Barks (Zhang Yuedong, 2007)
  • My Memories of Old Beijing (Wu Yigong, 1982)
  • Once Upon a Time in China III (Tsui Hark, 1993)
  • On the Beat (Ning Ying, 1995)
  • Oxhide (Liu Jiayin, 2005)
  • Peking Opera Blues (Tsui Hark, 1986)
  • Petition (Zhao Liang, 2009)
  • Pirated Copy (Jianjun He, 2004)
  • Postman (He Jianjun, 1995)
  • Quitting (Zhang Yang, 2001)
  • Red Light Revolution (Sam Voutas, 2011)
  • Shadow Magic (Ann Hu, 2000)
  • Shower (Zhang Yang, 1999)
  • Spicy Love Soup (Zhang Yang, 1997)
  • Spring Subway (Zhang Yibai, 2002)
  • Stolen Life (Shaohong Li, 2005)
  • Summer Palace (Lou Ye, 2006)
  • Together (Chen Kaige, 2002)
  • Vengeance (Chang Cheh, 1970)
  • Waiting Alone (Dayyan Eng, 2004)
  • We are the…of Communism (Zien Cui, 2007)
  • The World (Jia Zhangke, 2004)

Titles in italics have been assigned. All other titles are available for request. Please be flexible when requesting titles as some films will be very popular with contributors.

With regards to spotlight essays, we suggest the following topics:

Apartment Stories: Discussion of representations of average family life in the city of Beijing through reference to living spaces in residential areas, perhaps at various levels of social-economic standing, also with reference to demolition, redevelopment and relocation.

Navigating Beijing: Discussion of how travelling around Beijing is represented in film, with reference to new freeway systems, travel by bicycle, subway, on foot, busy intersections and secret back-alleys.

Old Beijing: Discussion of representations of old Beijing through reference to period dramas/historical adventures/wuxia.

Political Power: Discussion of Beijing as the political centre of China with reference to relevant films that take place during various periods of Chinese history and unifying characteristics in their framing of Beijing as a place for governance and policy; locations discussed in this essay on supreme power will include Tiananmen Square, the Imperial Palace and the Summer Palace.

Essays in italics have been assigned. All other essays are available for request.

**** We will also consider other films and essay topics, or variations on the above essay topics, providing that they meet the criteria for inclusion in the volume. ****

To write a scene review of a certain title, you must have access to a high-quality DVD of the film in order to make screen-grabs of the scene under discussion. Therefore, please ensure that you have access to relevant DVDs before requesting to write about particular titles in order to avoid inconvenience at a later stage. Screen-grabs may also need to be supplied for the spotlight essays.

Contributors will preferably have knowledge and experience of Beijing and/or expertise in the areas of Chinese cinema or urban culture and development. Contributors must be able to work to deadlines. Each contributor will be provided with a project overview and some samples from an earlier volume in the series. Details of how to collate and submit all material will also be provided.

Generally, we would like contributors to be responsible for either 3-4 scene reviews, or 1 essay and 1-2 scene reviews.

The deadline for all scene reviews and spotlight essays will be January 22, 2012. However, it would also be appreciated if contributors could send their first scene review within a few months of the project start date in order to make sure that their approach is adhering to general project guidelines.

Contact Email:

Further details about the World Film Locations series can be found at the Intellect website:,id=27/

**** All material for this volume has now been assigned. Many thanks for your interest in World Film Locations: Beijing. ****

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