Tang Danian


Tang Danian
b. 1968, Taiyuan, Shanxi
Screenwriter, director, producer
One of the most talented screenwriters of the Sixth Generation (see Sixth Generation (film directors)), Tang brought a new edgy urban sensibility to his depiction of Chinese society, especially its lost misguided youth. A graduate of the Beijing Film Academy (1989), Tang was immediately noticed as the writer of Zhang Nuanxin’s Good Morning, Beijing (Beijing nizao, 1990)—a film showing young Beijingers having casual sex, listening to rock music and contemplating abortion.
Tang was one of the three screenwriters involved in Zhang Yuan’s Beijing Bastards (Beijing zazhong, 1993)—with Zhang Yuan and the rock star Cui Jian—that goes even further in exploring the dislocation of society as evidenced by a nascent ‘counter-culture’ of marginal living and rock ‘n’ roll. After the film was banned, Tang worked in television—writing, producing and directing several dramatic series, including Where Do YouStay? (Ni zai nali douliu, 1997) and the documentary, Alley People (Hutong renjia, 1994).
In 1996, Crazy Guy (Qiaozhe ge ren) won a NHK/ Sundance award for Best Screenplay, but was never produced as a film. In 1998, Tang wrote and directed Jade (Yü), as part of the made-for-TV film series Super City (Chaoji chengshi), produced by Lou Ye for the Shanghai Film Studio. City Paradise (Dushi tiantang, 2000), his first underground feature, describes the plight and broken dreams of a young peasant leaving his mother and wife in the country while hoping for a better, more ‘modern’ life in Beijing. Tang also collaborated on the screenplay of Wang Xiaoshuai’s award-winning Beijing Bicycle (Shiqisui de danche, 2000).
BÉRÉNICE REYNAUD

Encyclopedia of contemporary Chinese culture. . 2011.

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