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June 20, 2019

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‘Thrones’ director aims to scale ‘Gold Mountain’

Alan Taylor, director of “Game of Thrones,” says that his new film “Gold Mountain” will dig into American history and depict a piece of the story of early Chinese immigrants moving to America during the late 1850s gold rush.

The new film is part of a gigantic film incubation project with Starlight Culture, a Hong Kong-listed Chinese film company. Shooting is scheduled to start and finish in 2020.

“History is my real interest,” Taylor said on Tuesday at the Shanghai International Film Festival, explaining how he found this “Chinese story.” His wife is a Chinese-American and has always wanted to tell the story of the early Chinese immigrants’ integration into the United States.

The film “Gold Mountain” will tell the story of a shrewd widow who helps smuggle an unruly Chinese girl into the US and into a fiercely violent world dominated by male chauvinism. Facing their life battle together, the two women finally establish a profound relationship.

“You will be surprised when you open the history books of the US. The history of those early Chinese immigrants in the gold rush who helped build the Pacific Railway is almost completely wiped out,” said Taylor. “But even for me, the subject is too heavy to handle. It was not until I found these two women, so subtle and so real, that I convinced myself to do the movie.”

He said the film is both “very American” and “very Chinese.” It depicts the typical American West, with early Chinese immigrants as the leading characters. In addition, Chinese-Malaysian Hollywood movie star Michelle Yeoh will join as co-producer.

“History is grand. But fundamentally my film is only about human nature. It is not painful nor agonizing, but very uplifting when you see how people turn from ‘tough’ to ‘soft’ and make deep connections with their souls and hearts,” he said.

Taylor is known for his work on TV such as “Game of Thrones.” He has also directed films like “Thor: The Dark World” and “Terminator: Genisys.”

Among other projects in Starlight’s Sino-US incubation plans are Roland Emmerich’s “Rebirth,” “Empress Wu” by Robert Zemeckis and “Bad Boys” by Sylvester Stallone.

Starlight has developed its business in Hollywood in recent years. It has signed up with Hollywood directors, including Emmerich, Taylor, Zemeckis and Gary Gray, according to Peter Luo, CEO of Starlight.


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