Ning Ying

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Ning Ying
Chinese name 寧瀛 (traditional)
Chinese name 宁瀛 (simplified)
Pinyin Níng Yíng (Mandarin)
Born 1959 (age 59–60)
Occupation Film director
Golden Montgolfiere
1993 For Fun
Grand Prix du Cinema du Reel
2002 Railroad of Hope

Ning Ying (born 1959 in Beijing) is a female Chinese film director often considered a member of China's "Sixth Generation" filmmaker coterie,[1] a group that also includes Jia Zhangke, Zhang Yuan and Wang Xiaoshuai. However, this is more a result of a shared subject matter than anything else, as chronologically, Ning is closer to the earlier Fifth Generation.[2] Her sister, the screenwriter Ning Dai, is a frequent collaborator and the wife of fellow director Zhang Yuan. In 1997, she was a member of the jury at the 47th Berlin International Film Festival.[3]

Directorial career

Part of the first class to reenter the Beijing Film Academy in 1978 (along with Fifth Generation helmers Zhang Yimou, Tian Zhuangzhuang and Chen Kaige), Ning Ying's career veered away from the path of her male counterparts when she was allowed to study abroad in Italy's Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia.[1] While in Italy, she met Italian director Bernardo Bertolucci, whom she would act as an assistant director for in the 1987 epic The Last Emperor.[1]

Her own career first reached international prominence with 1993's For Fun (also known as Looking for Fun), which would become the first of Ning Ying's "Beijing Trilogy," a loosely tied grouping of films that all take place in Beijing — the other two films being the black comedy, On the Beat and the drama, I Love Beijing. Together, the films are an analysis of the massive changes that China's national capital has undergone in the recent decades.[1]

In 2003, the trilogy was shown in its entirety by the Harvard Film Archive in an event touted as "From China with Love: The Films of Ning Ying."[4]

Ning followed her Beijing trilogy with a full-length documentary, Railroad of Hope in 2002, which followed the mass migration of cheap labor throughout China. The film managed to win the Grand Prix du Cinema du Reel in 2002.[1]

In 2005, she made Perpetual Motion, which premiered in several major film festivals, notably Venice and Toronto.


Year English Title Chinese Title Notes
1990 Someone Loves Just Me 有人偏偏爱上我
1993 For Fun 找乐 Golden Montgolfiere at the 1993 Nantes Three Continents Festival
1995 On the Beat 民警故事
2001 I Love Beijing 夏日暖洋洋
2002 Railroad of Hope 希望之旅 Grand Prix du Cinema du Reel
2005 Perpetual Motion 无穷动
2013 To Live and Die in Ordos 警察日记 (Jingcha Riji) International Premiere at the 2013 Tokyo International Film Festival
2015 Romance Out of the Blue 浪漫天降


  1. ^ a b c d e Zhang Zhen (Spring 2004). "Woman with a Movie Camera: Ning Ying's cinematic visions document a rapidly changing China" (PDF). Nieman Reports. Retrieved 2008-03-28. [dead link]
  2. ^ Kochan, Dror (September 2003). "Wang Xiaoshuai". Senses of Cinema. Archived from the original on 2008-02-09. Retrieved 2008-03-28.
  3. ^ "Berlinale: 1997 Juries". Retrieved 2012-01-07.
  4. ^ "From China with Love: The Films of Ning Ying". Harvard Film Archive. Retrieved 2008-03-28.

External links

  • Ning Ying on IMDb
  • Ning Ying at AllMovie
  • Ning Ying at the Chinese Movie Database
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