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Monday, 7 January, 2002, 09:57 GMT
Upswing for Hong Kong film industry
Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon
Crouching Tiger won four Oscars in March 2001
Hong Kong film-makers are set to build on Oscar success and recognition by increasing their output.

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon won four Academy Awards for the Hong Kong and Taiwan production, spotlighting the countries' film industries.

Now Hong Kong is attempting to recreate its 1980s heyday by increasing the number and quality of films it produces.

Up to 150 films are in the pipeline for 2002, according to Hung Cho-sing, director of the region's Motion Picture Industry Association (MPIA).

Jackie Chan
Jackie Chan made the successful move into Hollywood films
Each movie will have an average budget of around HK$10m (886,445).

Last year the Hong Kong film industry saw a sharp increase in box office takings.

Easing of controls

Figures were up 24% to HK$478.98m (42.45m), with local films accounting for 47% of the total.

There were 144 Hong Kong films released in 2001.

An easing of controls on private sector funding in film has led studios to promise a greater number of productions during the year.

An increase in overseas demand has also led to the buoyant outlook.

Hong Kong-listed China Star Entertainment has said it will make about 20 to 30 films during 2002, with a budget of up to HK$300m (26.5m).

Decline

One of the region's biggest studios, Shaw Brothers, plans to produce 10 films, while Universe International has slated 12 movies.

Couching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
Crouching Tiger is the most successful foreign language film ever
Although the territory's film industry enjoyed success in the 1980s, it declined in the 1990s and actors and technical talent moved overseas.

Jackie Chan and Crouching Tiger star Chow Yun Fat have been Hong Kong's biggest acting exports.

Hong Kong used to produce up to 300 films a year, making it the third most prolific industry behind India and the United States.

But the decline saw this number drop considerably, until less than half this number were going into production.

See also:

21 May 01 | Film
Composer sues Crouching Tiger
17 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Tiger's runaway success
05 Feb 01 | Entertainment
Crouching Tiger star has it licked
05 Jan 01 | Entertainment
Ang Lee's Tiger roars on
29 Jan 01 | Entertainment
Tiger is UK's biggest foreign film
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