Bayi Film Studio

Bayi Film Studio

The August First Film Studio (Bayi dianyingzhipianchang 八一电影制片厂), usually known as the Bayi Film Studio, was founded in 1952. Its full title is the China People’s Liberation August First Film Studio (Zhongguo renmin jiefangjun Bayi dianyingzhipianchang 中国人民解放军八一电影制片厂). It was a unit of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and is named after the date on which the Red Army, the military wing of the CCP was founded in 1927 (it was rename the People’s Liberation Army in 1946). The August First Studio produced 2,100 films between 1952 and 2006, including features, television films, documentaries, and military educational shorts.[1] Most of its films are military-themed.

One of its most influential films was “Tunnel Warfare” (Di dao zhan, 1964), which was one of a handful of features that were screened during the Cultural Revolution. It is said to be the most watched film in the whole world, with 1.8 billion viewing times. It is also said to be the most circulated black-and-white film in the world, with 8,420 prints distributed in 35mm and 16mm formats, according to the studio’s museum. In the 1980s-1990s, August First specializes in battle reconstruction and in the 1980s and 1990s produced a three-part film depicting the Liberation War of 1946-49 that lasted 25 hours and 10 minutes and had a claimed cast of 3.54 million.

By the 1990s “its five soundstages were rarely fully occupied,” and by the early 2000s it was producing two to three features a year, but is still often used for dubbing.

The August First Studio is located in the Fengtai district of Beijing.[2]

[1] Source: http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/cndy/2006-03/20/content_546723.htm and http://english.cntv.cn/program/cultureexpress/20120803/113992.shtml and http://www.ln.chinanews.com/html/2011-04-28/210720.html.

[2] Source: http://baike.baidu.com/view/192882.htm?fromtitle=%E5%85%AB%E4%B8%80%E7%94%B5%E5%BD%B1%E5%88%B6%E7%89%87%E5%8E%82&fromid=502312&type=syn.