Ying Liang, the director of Taking Father Home, Good Cats, and The Other Half and a leading figure in the world of independent Chinese cinema, has reportedly had police visit his family in Shanghai. Ying, who is in Hong Kong, has been threatened with arrest if he returns to China. The harassment began following a screening of his most recent narrative feature, When Night Falls at the Jeonju Film Festival in South Korea. Writing for The New Yorker, Richard Brody reports:
The film that got Ying in trouble is his latest, “When Night Falls,” which, according to [Malaysian filmmaker and blogger Edmund] Yeo, was shown in the Jeonju film festival, in South Korea. Yeo’s post has a wide range of details about the film and the case. The movie is based on the true story of a man who was “executed in 2008 for murdering six policemen with a knife in a Shanghai police station after being arrested and beaten for riding an unlicensed bicycle.”
Yeo quotes from Ying’s post on Facebook, which states that, after the film was shown in Jeonju, his family, in Shanghai, and his wife’s family, in Sichuan, were visited and intimidated by the Chinese police, who then tried “to buy the copyright of the film” in Korea for an extraordinarily high price. Ying adds that he returned to Hong Kong (where he is currently working) and learned that he would be arrested if he goes back to China.