The trajectory of Taiwan’s economic and cultural development has been captured in the past 50 years of Taiwanese cinema. These priceless cultural resources, however, face irreparable damage from decay and mold.
To help restore classic Taiwanese movies and digitalize such materials, the Ministry initiated the Taiwan Classic Movies Digital Restoration and Value-added Usage Plan.
National Film Archive
To protect such culturally relevant video materials, the Ministry founded the National Film Archive to handle the collection, preservation, restoration, digitalization and promotion of Taiwanese films. Currently over 14,000 films have already been collected, in addition to approximately three million feet of tape from the Taiwan Film Company and 3,008 films from previous Chinese productions. These include feature films, documentaries, news, recreational movies, educational movies and more.
Much of the aforementioned precious Taiwanese material has been severely damaged due to age and acidification. The Ministry hopes to reverse the damage by applying for an outlay with the National Science Council’s Technology and Development Plan. From 2013 through 2017, the Ministry will receive an annual budget of up to NT$30 million to apply towards advanced methods in film science and digital frame restoration.
As of 2013, this project has already been certified for restoring eight films with a budget of NT$23 million. These films include:
- “Four Moods” by famous co-directors Bai Jingrui, King Hu, Li Hsing and Li Han-hsiang.
- “A Touch of Zen” featuring Hsu Feng, Shih Jun and Roy Chiao, and directed by King Hu.
- “Love and Duty,” a 1931 silent film starring Ruan Lingyu and Jin Yan.
- “A Trip Through China,” a documentary by Russian citizen Benjamin Brodsky.
All of the above are the only copies left in existence, making them invaluable beyond measure.
The project aims to drive the national digital film restoration industry’s equipment and abilities even higher, lead manufacturers to recognize the value and potential of digitalization and attract more international business opportunities for restoration. Another theme is the use of national and international expositions, film festivals, trade shows and publications to improve research and development in the cultural and creative industries and to showcase Taiwan's innovative spirit.
- October 2013 > Movie icons to promote film restoration efforts