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Prolific animation producer's light has dimmed

By Xu Fan | China Daily | Updated: 2017-08-12 09:50

Prolific animation producer's light has dimmed

Dear Tutu [Photo provided to China Daily]

Li Baochuan, an animation history expert at Hangzhou Normal University, says that the studio's activities have slowed as it has faced a lack of direction and a shortage of talent. This is mainly because since reform and opening-up policies were introduced in the 1970s, Chinese mainland enterprises have been radically overhauled, having to at least partially make ends meet independent of state support.

"In the early days the studio's bosses and animators were all top talent," Li says.

However, many great animators left in the late 1980s, lured by much more attractive financial rewards offered by privately owned animation companies in Hong Kong or Taiwan with offices in Shenzhen.

"In Shanghai most animators were earning about 300 yuan a month, whereas in Shenzhen they were earning 10 times that. In fact the best of them could earn 10,000 yuan a month."

However, the careers of those who took the well-paid jobs were hampered because most were employed to do lower-end tasks.

"Western animators were brought in to design the roles and sets, which are the most creative, significant part of an animated production," Li says.

"The Chinese animators were hired to draw the content following Western concepts. Such work is highly labor-and time-intensive, but it does little to improve your creativity."

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