This is Hengdian, the huge city-film studio created by China that covers 5,000 years of history

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When in the mid 90’s Xu Wenrongfounder and then president of Hengdian Groupfound out that the film director Xiejin looking for a location to shoot The Opium War decided to do something only available to great fortunes: create one from scratch. In just four months, the company built in Hengdian —a town located in the province of Zhejiangin the eastern region of the country—a street inspired by the 19th-century port city of Guangzhou.

Xie Jin’s tape worked well. And Wenrong’s company, perhaps encouraged by the experience, decided to repeat the feat… multiplying it by a thousand. That first street became the seed of a project that today, more than a quarter of a century later, has germinated in Hengdian World Studiosa huge set for movies and television with more than 30 filming spaces, plates, buildings that represent historical palaces and gardens and legions and legions of technicians and actors. All a city devoted to cinema on what was once a hill with farmland.

Such a dimension has reached Hengdian World Studios since the 90s that its managers claim which is “the largest film and television base in the world”. Of course it is not easy to find an outdoor studio with similar dimensions. The company claims its more than 100 movie sets make up “the world’s largest movie set” and more than 300 crews flock to its studios each year. Throughout its history, it already has 3,200, which, it calculates, represents approximately a quarter of China’s film and TV production.

Chinese Hollywood

The percentage is enormous, but some specialized media go further and —despite the fact that the country has other great shooting basesWhat Shanghai Film ParkZhongshan TV or Film City—estimate that 70% of all movies and TV shows are recorded in Hengdian.

To complete the portrait, in 2008 China.org.cn pointed that the studios covered 330 hectares and the built area of ​​its different bases was close to 496,000 m2. The study also adds several recordshow to host China’s largest Buddha figure in an enclosed space or the largest indoor movie studio. There are already those who refer to Hengdian as the “Chinese Hollywood”.

Beyond its capital figures or having become a great tourist attractionwith dozens of hotels, thousands of rooms and an avalanche of visitors every year, Hengdian World Studios stands out for another feature, very much in tune with its origins as a film set for The Opium War: its amalgamation of palaces, gardens, streets and squares inspired by the history of China, a display that —boast their creators— covers some 5,000 years of country history.

Qing Ming Shang He Tu

Qing Ming Shang He Tu.

Qing Ming Shang He Tu 4

Qing Ming Shang He Tu.

Qing Ming Shang He Tu 3

Qing Ming Shang He Tu.

Palace Of The Ming And Qing Dynasties

Palace Of The Ming And Qing Dynasties.

tang park 2

Tang Park.

tang park

Tang Park.

The Qin Emperor's Palace 2

The Qin Emperor’s Palace.

Palace Of The Ming And Qing Dynasties 2

Palace Of The Ming And Qing Dynasties.

Guangzhou Street Hong Kong Street

Guangzhou Street and Hong Kong.

Dream Bund 2

Dream Bund.

Dream Bund

Dream Bund.

Whoever walks through its streets can find replicas of the Qin Imperial Palace, another of the Ming dynasties and qinglandscapes inspired by the works of Zhang Zeduana painter from the XI, streets that recreate the Guangzhou and Hong Kong of 1840 or Shanghai of 1930, the Dazhi Temple, a park with a constructed area of ​​around 50,000 m2 that recreates the aesthetics of the tang dynasty or a scale replica of the Beijing Summer Palace. In addition to the sets for filming, Hengdian includes areas designed as attractions for tourists, such as Dream Valley or Dreamful Spring Valley.

Probably one of those spaces already you have seen them without realizing it. Since the 1990s, Hengian has served as the setting for popular movies in and out of Asia. For example, actors from Tiger and dragon, The forbidden kingdom, The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperorthe version of mulan released by Disney last year, or Chinese Paladin.

Images | Hengdian World

When in the mid 90’s Xu Wenrongfounder and then president of Hengdian Groupfound out that the film director Xiejin looking…

When in the mid 90’s Xu Wenrongfounder and then president of Hengdian Groupfound out that the film director Xiejin looking…

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