One month after his first visit, award-winning Chinese film director Yinxi Song is back in Beirut. This time, he’s shooting his action movie “Home Operation” in Lebanon!
Based on the early stage of the civil war in 2015, the film is working on showcasing how China evacuated more than 600 nationals and more than 200 nationals of other countries.
The story reproduces the thrilling evacuation operation, showing China’s image of internationalism and humanitarianism.
“I have been to many Middle Eastern countries, but I found what I was looking for here in Lebanon,” Yinxi Song told The961.
“I found all kinds of buildings, streets, modern and old, church and mosque, the rich and the poor. Besides that, I also found different natural sceneries, mountain and sea, desert and woods,” Yinxi Song added. “Everything I need to shoot the film is found in Lebanon.”
He explained that the Chinese audience is starting to become more and more interested in international topics.
Along with the growing numbers of Chinese overseas and the increasing care of the Chinese government towards its nationals, “consular protection is one of the most important works of the Ministry of Foreign Affair in China.”
“This movie was made to truly reproduce the evacuation of Chinese overseas. It highlights the Chinese government’s “people-oriented” ruling philosophy, reflects the wisdom of the Chinese Communist Party members, demonstrates the responsibility of the great country, and eulogizes that we have a strong motherland as a carrier,” he explained.
Song has also directed other popular films, such as “Who Am I 2015”, and is a close friend of Jackie Chan, the Chinese actor and martial arts star who received an honorary Oscar for his decades of work in film.
The Chinese film director emphasized that he was able to also consider Lebanon due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which blocked his planned production work in other countries.
He was introduced to Lebanon by Eliana Ibrahim, the President of China’s Arab Association for Promoting Cultural & Commercial Exchange (CAA).
During Song’s first visit, he chose many sites in Tripoli that he deemed resembling the street of Aden Yemen, which makes it possible for him to start the shoot in the upcoming two months.
“This is a great opportunity for both the Chinese and Lebanese film industries. I am in Lebanon for already 20 years, and I know it will end up as a splendid mixture,” Eliana Ibrahim told The961.
“Of course, since it is the first collaboration, I am sure we will face a lot of cultural differences,” Ibrahim said. However, she added that they are currently recruiting Lebanese talents that are willing to participate and help in the making of this film.
“Lebanese people, as well as the nation, will both benefit from this production. Besides, it’s a chance for the investors to enter into the rewardable Chinese cinema market. We all know investing in the cultural industry, if it is a successful one, has much higher rate of returning,” she noted.
According to Song, once they settle down on the team and executive plan, they will run the camera the soonest.
“Home Operation” is expected to be released in cinemas worldwide as well as on streaming websites.