Well-remembered French classic make a big splash in China

Updated: 2015-10-22 07:22

By Xu Fan(China Daily)

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Well-remembered French classic make a big splash in China

Poster of The Little Prince. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Following two timelines, the 108-minute film weaves the prince's poetic tale into a modern story, which revolves around a studious teenager's struggle and compromises with her pushy mother.

Bored by her tight lecture schedule, the young girl befriends an aging pilot next door and becomes fascinated by his story of the little prince and the asteroids.

The first half mainly narrates the book's tale, while the latter half centers on the girl's adventure in a populated planet exclusively for adults to rescue the prince, whom the girl believes will save the dying pilot.

Osborne says the crew paid a visit to the copyright holders of The Little Prince.

"I didn't want to make a film that they didn't support ... and I was very nervous to present my idea to them," the auteur says.

After the owners reacted with applause, laughter and even tears, Osborne took nearly six years to prepare and shoot the film, which he describes as "a full immersion".

"Even when I was sleeping, I was still thinking about it, or dreaming about the scenarios," he says.

The 45-year-old director's earliest connection to the novel goes back to nearly 25 years ago, when his girlfriend sent a copy to him as gift.

Many years later, while Osborne was packing personal items in boxes, he discovered a letter that she wrote to him in those early days, when he decided to relocate from New York to California for further studies in animation.

"I love you. We'll be always together even when we're apart," the woman who is now his wife quoted from The Little Prince.

"It was the first quote coming back to me after many years, and I still remember how powerful it was when I read the story," says Osborne.