Vannavong Khamphao: Film Industry Cooperation Boosts Sino-Laos Cultural Exchange


作者:徐勤 朱贺芳 康郁


  Vannavong Khamphao is head of the Feature Film Division at Lao’s Film Department. Having graduated from a university in China, to-date he has translated and dubbed many Chinese feature films into Lao. CCTSS had an opportunity to interview him during the Sino-Foreign Audiovisual Translation & Dubbing Cooperation Workshop held in Shanghai, June 2017.

  Film and culture’s gradual edification in China and Laos

  China and Laos are neighbors linked by mountains and rivers and our two peoples have a long history of friendly exchanges. In recent years, the craze for Chinese language has continued to heat up in Laos. Being the first step to Chinese cultural transmission, many Chinese films and television shows have become a part of life for people in Laos, helping them better understand Chinese culture, hence promoting more platforms of cultural cooperation and mutual understanding between the two countries.

  “It’s rather easy for Chinese films, documentaries and TV shows to enter the Laos market thanks to the legal safeguards. Moreover, we are both socialist countries who share the same ethnic and cultural roots, having common cultural characteristics, languages and customs. There are so many opportunities for cultural exchange.” Vannavong Khamphao said, “In the past, most Lao people liked films from Hong Kong and Taiwan, but now they are fonder of films from the mainland, and especially like Chinese kung-fu and historical TV dramas.”

  Laos’ Ethnic Language Film Week – Feature films dubbed with Xishuangbanna minority languages

  In recent years, China and Laos have enjoyed progress in various fields, especially in terms of culture and film industry cooperation. “In 2004, I translated the movie Under the Hawthorn Tree by Zhang Yimou, which was featured at the Exhibition of China, an event jointly hosted by the Chinese Embassy in Laos and the Lao Ministry of Culture”, Vannavong Khamphao said.

  In the Ethnic Language Film Week held domestically by Laos’s China Cultural Center, visitors got to see feature films like Painted Skin, Detective D and Ip Man dubbed in minority languages from Xishuangbanna in China’s Yunnan province. This is the first step towards promoting a strategic cooperative partnership – a partnership where China and Laos can join hands in introducing the world to movies dubbed in Xishuangbanna’s minority languages, thus creating more channels for cultural communication and helping Lao people better understand Chinese culture.

  Blooming Plumeria to be released this September in Guangxi Province.

  On April 25, 2016, China and Laos co-produced a film Blooming Plumeria in celebration of the 55th anniversary of their diplomatic relations. It tells the beautiful love stories of Chinese-Lao couples and was filmed in Mainland China, Taiwan Province, Laos and Thailand. Showing the unique customs of Southeast Asia from a brand-new perspective, the film tells two stories of transnational love from two generations, while celebrating a great love of humanity and humanism. “This film has two versions, Chinese and Lao, and will be released in September in Guangxi Province. For the first time, audiences will see the mysterious and peculiar landscapes of Luang Prabang and the Golden Triangle in the north of Thailand.” As the first co-production of the two countries, Blooming Plumeria has contributed significantly to the traditional friendship and comprehensive strategic partnership shared between China and Laos. Vannavong Khamphao expressed his hopes for deeper cooperation between the two countries and the building of a golden bridge for more profound cultural exchanges.