Chinawood Beats Them All

A view of Hengdian World Studios in Zhejiang, ...

Overview of Hengdian World Studios - Image via Wikipedia

Yesterday I wrote about Nollywood, the Nigerian film industry, which I think by now is the second biggest producer of films in the world. I’m talking number of films produced in the case of Nigeria. If you want to know about the largest studio in the world then you need to travel to the other side of the world where the Chinese easily have everyone else beat.

A five-hour drive southwest of Shanghai is the Hengdian World Studios and Theme Park. It’s 2,500 acres makes it bigger than Paramount and Universal studios combined. The studios has full-sized replicas of all the important buildings and palaces of historic China including a reconstruction of the Forbidden City.

Tourists and extras in Hengdian World

Tourists and extras in Hengdian World - Image via Wikipedia

All the big budget historical Chinese action films of recent years were filmed here. The owner lets production companies use the facilities for free but requires the use of local extras and controls costume rentals.

Along with the studios there is a theme park which, much like Disneyland in the US, tries to reconstruct the look and feel of an idealized past.

Although Chinawood is very different from Nollywood they both make it clear that the entertainment business is alive and well in the World.

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