No Fifth Grade – Documentary Filmmaking in China Today
Film Screening and Discussion with Dr. CHRISTINE CHOY, Documentary Filmmaker
No Fifth Grade is part of a series of documentary films on rural life in China produced by director Christine Choy in cooperation with The Zigen Fund. The film captures a village mayor’s assiduous efforts to save his thousand-year-old village as government urbanization policies call for a closing of the village’s primary school. Choy has spent ten years directing documentaries in China that speak to the burdens of the countries’ rural residents and migrant workers.
Christine Choy was trained as an architect with a Master of Science degree from the Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation at Columbia University. She then went onto earn a Directing Certificate from the American Film Institute in Los Angeles. Dr. Choy is aprofessor, and former chair of the NYU film school, and is currently a Fulbright Fellow in Beijing. The Chinese Government listed her recent documentary, Second Spring as one of the ten best documentaries in 2011. She has made more than 75 films, received over 60 international awards including an Oscar Nomination for Who Killed Vincent Chin and the best cinematography award from the Sundance International Film Festival. Dr. Choy has received numerous fellowships among them: John Simon Guggenheim, Rockefeller, and Asian Cultural Council. She was the Founding Director of the School of Creative Media, City University of Hong Kong; a member of project vetting committee of the Film Development Fund, Hong Kong Film Development Council; and a former Trustee of the Global Board of Trustees of the Asia Society.
Former CNBC Asia presenter Karen Koh will lead the post screening discussion with Dr. Choy on the challenges of urbanization in China, the state of documentary filmmaking, and Dr. Choy’s personal story of growing up in Shanghai and rising to international prominence.