China Films' Box Office Chances Hindered By Translation Woes

China Films' Box Office Chances Hindered By Translation Woes
China Films' Box Office Chances Hindered By Translation Woes (photo: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UvMk7Z0Sp7E)
By Yves Matthew AmodiaJune 20th, 2016

If China were to have a major box office hit overseas, they would have to invest more in translating them into foreign languages.

That was the consensus made at the conclusion of the 10-day Sino-Foreign Audiovisual Translation and Dubbing Cooperation Workshop and Symposium done in Shanghai and Beijing. Co-organized by the Ministry of Culture and the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SAPPRFT), the conference was done to address problems in the promotion of Chinese titles in foreign countries all over the world.

Michael Sinterniklaas, founder of New York-based recording studio NYAV Post, has suggested that film companies China should invest more money in promotion including translation services if they are to breakout overseas.

"When you spend so much money to shoot a film, it is equally important to spend money on dubbing for overseas promotion," Sinterniklaas said.

According to China Daily, a study made by Beijing Normal University has shown that 70 percent of foreigners who watch Chinese films complain that much of the essence of dialogue is lost in translation and therefore subtitles should be improved as dubbing takes more time and money.

Deanna Gao, the founder of the Paris-based China Film Festival in France, has posited that part of the reason why Chinese films remain inaccessible to Western media compared to its other Asian counterparts is the format of the subtitles.

"In most cases, dubbing is replaced by subtitles to save money and time," she said. "But subtitles are difficult to read for many people, like children."

This comes days after SAPPRFT called for more collaboration between different countries in the production of films and television series during the Shanghai International Film Festival, Xinhua reported.  

The Sino-Foreign Audiovisual Translation and Dubbing Cooperation Workshop and Symposium was attended by 60 translators, dubbing artists, filmmakers, film company managers and film enthusiasts from 30 countries. 

 

 

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