Two UK projects selected to connect with China through Bridging the Dragon

Ten projects have been selected for the first Sino-European content lab, Bridging the Dragon, which comprises two four-day residential workshops before the next Shanghai and Locarno film markets. 

Newly funded through Creative Europe's Access to Markets scheme, Bridging the Dragon aims to connect European and Chinese film industries through a network of professionals from both sides, helping to develop contacts, resources and content. 

Two UK projects have been chosen to join the line-up: French-UK producer Christopher Granier-Deferre's The River Dragon Princess (Poisson Rouge Pictures) tells the story of a Chinese girl who is sent to boarding school in Britain where she is bullied for being different. She discovers a fantastical world of princesses and dragons, helping her to learn how to overcome her tormentors. Meanwhile adventure-drama The Navigator, produced by UK-South African Spier Films, tells the story of Chinese admiral Zheng He's initial arrival in East Africa in 1435. He is drawn into local rivalries, love and war, risking the fate of an empire.

The chosen projects were announced on Saturday at the Cannes Film Festival. The lab is inviting a total of five projects from Europe and five from China that are already suitable for co-production or co-financing. Tutors including writer Huan Shu (Lost in Thailand) and Alex Z Jia, head of development at New Culture Beijing, will support the attendees grouped in teams consisting of an author and a producer on story structure, believability of the setting in relation to the other co-producing side and the feasibility of the co-production.

To conclude the programme, the ten projects will be presented to the public at the Locarno Industry Days.

The projects selected for this first edition of the lab cover a variety of genres from different countries. To see the full list, visit the Cineuropa website.