Yumama is at work! Let’s see, who should I ship next?
The second part of my feature~ Here is a list of the most well known production teams and directors for Chinese projects 🙂
Tangren was created in 1998. The president, Karen Tsai, was only 25 when she started the company and participated on more than 40 series (You go girl @_@). Another important figure of the company is Lee Kwok Lap (or Li Guoli), who produced a large quantity of the most memorable dramas below. A large amount of Tangren dramas stars Hu Ge and Liu Shishi, but they also involves the recurring participation of the rest of signed actors (eg: Guli Nazha, Jiang Jingfu, Yuan Hong). Haha, In 2012, I thought they were overworking my baby girl Liu Shishi :P. All in all, Tangren does some of the best periodic dramas out there and is famous for their impact in the dramaland.
- Signed actors: Hu Ge, Liu Shishi, Guli Nazha, Hu Bingqing
- Ex-signed actors: Yuan Hong, Lin Gengxin, Jiang Jingfu, Ying Er, Sun Yizhou
- Notorious dramas: Chinese Paladin 1 and Chinese Paladin 3, Bu Bu Jing Xin, Legend of Condor Heroes, Wu Xin: Monster Killer
- Upcoming projects: Three Lives Three Worlds (movie), 20 Once Again
Yu Zheng (Yumama)
Yu Zheng is famous for his controversial dramas, often brought to court for plagiarism. His most famous cases include the one against Chiung Yao for Palace 3: The Lost Daughter and the public dispute against Tong Hua for Destined to Love You. His other projects such as Schemes of a Beauty, Palace I and Beauty without Tears all involve plagiarism claims by third parties. Would he change his ways? I certainly hope so! Yu Zheng’s favourite actor is Chen Xiao, who starred in the most projects created by the Yumama. His dramas are extremely popular and well known for their addictive and colourful *cough CGI cough* content.
- Signed actors: Chen Xiao, Yang Rong, Yuan Shanshan
- Notorious dramas: Legend of Luzhen, Palace I, Palace II, Swordsman, Romance of Condor Heroes
- Upcoming projects: Memory Lost
The biggest production company in China, Huayi, does a lot of collaboration with other individual companies and has the big bucks to invest in star studded projects. For that reason, they are involved in a lot of international and high budget projects, such as the movies directed by Feng Xiaogang.
- Signed actors: Angelababy, Yao Chen, Li Xiaolu, Jiang Nailiang, Li Chen, Chen He, Zheng Kai, Viann Zhang, Feng Shaofeng, Jing Boran, Ady An, Zhang Hanyu
- Notorious movies: Cell Phone, If You Are the One, The Forbidden Kingdom, Painted Skin, Taichi 0
- Upcoming projects: The Wasted Times
H&R Century Pictures
H&R heavily collaborated with Yu Zheng between 2009 to 2012. They also funded multiple celebrities to launch their own drama, including Hawick Lau, Du Chun and Ruby Lin.
- Signed actors:Tang Yan, Li Yifeng, Qin Chunjie
- Notorious movies: Ancient Sword, Palace, Lost Tomb, Zhu Xian
- Upcoming projects: The Glory of Tang Dynasty
On the list due to popular demand 😛 I don’t know this company very well but after watching The Disguiser and Nirvana in Fire, I am even more excited for their upcoming projects! As said in the comment section, Daylight Entertainment is part of Shandong Film which caters to an older audience. Some popular work from that company include Battle in Changsha, All Quiet in Beijing, and Family at Wenzhou.
- Signed actors: Jin Dong, Wang Kai, Liu Mingtao
- Notorious dramas: Nirvana in Fire, Ode to Joy, The Disguiser, Love Me if You Dare
- Upcoming projects: Ode to Joy 2, Nirvana in Fire 2
As Xingfenzhen said in the comment section, there is a lot more memorable companies than the ones named above. I suggest reading the comment section for videos and A LOT of details (thank you a lot!). Here is a quick recap of what she said:
LeTV and Ciwen TV both produced (invested) in many dramas with great success such as My Sunshine and Hua Qian Gu.
Beijing Television and Art Center is the oldest production team in China, and dominated CCTV (China’s main broadcasting channel) since the 80s, with memorable dramas such as Four Generations under One Roof, The Story of an Editorial Board, Zhen Huan Zhuan.
Another company similar to Beijing TV is China Teleplay Production Center which is directly connected to CCTV. They produced pearls such as Journey to the West, Dream of Red Chamber, A Taste of China, Three Kingdoms, and Hexi Corridor.
Finally, Shen Yi Entertainment started in 1990 as a joint venture between Taiwan and China. It produced many Chiung Yao’s work including Huan Zhu Ge Ge, Romance in the Rain, and Flowers in Fog.
… Obviously, I will not name all the companies out there, as it would take forever! However, click here for the list of production companies and their most famous signed actors 😛
Here is a list of the most well known directors in China and some of my favourite. The Top 3 have been producing movies since I was a baby and I grew up with their work in the back of my mind ^^~
Zhang Yimou does a lot of period movies such as Curse of the Golden Flower which are known for their gorgeous and meaningful setting. He is the most well known Chinese director and had many movies been chosen as the Chinese contestant for the Oscars. In addition, he directed the Opening and Closing Olympic Ceremony of Beijing 2008. Zhang Yimou is currently promoting his very much controversial movie The Great Wall starring Matt Damon.
- Actors associated with him: Zhang Ziyi, Gong Li, Zhou Dongyu, Ni Ni
- Famous movies: Flowers of War, Hero, House of Flying Daggers, Curse of the Golden Flower, Hero
- Upcoming projects: The Great Wall
Feng Xiaogang has a dry humour which he explores to the fullest in his comedy films. His movies represent the older generation of Chinese people and their struggle with changing time.
- Actors associated with him: Ge You, Zhang Hanyu, Shu Qi
- Famous projects: Cell Phone, A World Without Thieves, If You Are the One
- Upcoming projects: I am Not Madame Bovary
Who doesn’t know the “Sing girls”? They are girls scouted by Stephen Chow and who gained tremendous fame and popularity by these collaborations. Out of the list we presented, Stephen Chow is the only director who actively performs in his movies. His genre is comedy.
- Actors associated with him: Kitty Zhang, Athena Chu, Karen Mok, Eva Huang, Lin Yun
- Famous projects: A Chinese Odyssey, Shaolin Soccer, Kungfu Hustle, Mermaid
- Upcoming projects: Journey to the West 2
He is currently the most popular director for idol movies. Despite having gorgeous setting, cast, and scenes… his movies are boring and very cliche. His list of projects is very long and I watched a large number of them, although it was more for the cast than for his directing. His upcoming project, I Belonged to You will star Yang Yang, Bai Baihe, Deng Chao, and Zhang Tian Ai and it is one of my most anticipated projects.
- Famous projects: But Always, Fleet of Time, Run for Love, Never Gone
- Upcoming projects: I Belonged to You, Love O2O
Honorable mention for directors producing high quality dramas!
- 侯鸿亮, 孔笙, 李雪: Nirvana in Fire, Ode to Joy, The Disguiser
- 郑晓龙: Zhen Huan Zhuan, Mi Yue Zhuan
- 林玉芬: Hua Qian Gu, Chinese Paladin 3, Bubujingxin
- 张纪中: Romance of Three Kingdoms 1994, Tian Long Ba Bu 2003, Return of Condor Heroes 2006
- 高希希: Happiness as Flowers, Shanghai Bund, Three Kingdoms, For Love or Money
刘俊杰: My Sunshine, Boss&Me, I am Du Lala