Transnational Cinemas



Collection 2

American and Chinese-Language Cinemas: Examining Cultural Flows
Edited by: Lisa Funnell and Man-fung Yip
Routledge Advances in Film Studies Series, 2015

This collection (re)considers the complex dynamics of transnational cultural flows between American and Chinese-language film industries. The goal is to bring a more historical perspective to the subject, focusing as much on the Hollywood influence on early Shanghai or postwar Hong Kong films as on the intensifying flows between American and Chinese-language cinemas in recent decades. Contributors emphasize the processes of appropriation and reception involved in transnational cultural practices, examining film production, distribution, and reception.


Collection 1

Transnational Asian Identities in Pan-Pacific Cinemas: The Reel Asian Exchange
Edited by: Philippa Gates and Lisa Funnell
Routledge Advances in Film Studies, 2012

This collection examines the exchange of Asian identities taking place at the levels of both film production and film reception amongst pan-Pacific cinemas. The authors consider, on the one hand, texts that exhibit what Mette Hjort refers to as, “marked transnationality,” and on the other, the polysemic nature of transnational film texts by examining the release and reception of these films.



Asian Popular Culture
Edited by: Lisa Funnell and Yuya Kiuchi
Journal of Popular Culture 49.5 (2016)

This special issue in Journal of Popular Culture draws attention to the diverse and robust scholarship being produced on Asian popular culture. It features essays that explore various facets of popular culture from Japan, South Korea, China, India, Indonesia, Laos, Canada, and the United States.



Hong Kong’s It/Ip Man: The Chinese Contexts of Donnie Yen’s Transnational Stardom
By: Lisa Funnell
Transnational Stardom: International Celebrity in Film and Popular Culture
Palgrave, 2013, 117-138

This paper examines the transnational appeal of Donnie Yen in the Hong Kong and mainland Chinese film markets. On the one hand, Yen is considered to be last great action star choreographer of Hong Kong cinema helping to revitalize post-1997 Hong Kong cinema. On the other, Yen has emerged in the mainland film market as a figure of Chinese patriotism. Read through a distinctly local lens, Yen’s performance of martial arts in films like Ip Man (2008) have been interpreted as a form of national expression and resistance against foreign/non-Chinese influences.

  • Keywords: Donnie Yen, Woo Ping Yuen, action star choreographer, Hong Kong action, corporeal authenticity, Ip Man, Chinese nationalism, mainland China

The Repatriation of Overseas Chinese Stars in Post-1997 Hong Kong Cinema: Daniel Wu – A Case Study
By: Lisa Funnell
Transnational Cinemas 2.2 (2012): 163-178

This article examines the shifting star persona of the Asian American action star Daniel Wu. Although Wu is an American of Mainland Chinese descent, he was initially marketed as an overseas Chinese actor and return migrant to Hong Kong. Over the course of his career, he became increasingly localized and subsequently integrated into ge-ying-shi (music-film-TV) – the intermedial star system of Hong Kong – through his increased proficiency in Cantonese, award-winning performances in high-profile action films, and transnational promotion of the local (popular) culture of Hong Kong. The changes in Wu’s representation arguably serve as a model for the return migration of overseas Chinese and their incorporation into post-1997 Hong Kong.

  • Keywords: Daniel Wu, overseas Chinese, 1997 handover, Hong Kong action, return migration, repatriation, masculinity

Migrating West…To the East: Transnational Chinese Canadians in Hong Kong Action
By: Lisa Funnell
Transnational Asian Identities in Pan-Pacific Cinemas: The Reel Asian Exchange
Routledge, 2012, 133-146

This chapter explores how return migration after the handover has been reflected in Hong Kong’s post-1997 cultural industry which features multiple representations of transnational Chinese identity. In light of this transmigration, Chinese Canadians have become the largest pool of overseas talent from which the post-1997 film industry has drawn upon. Using the career of Choi as a case study, this paper examines the depiction of transmigrant returnee identity in post-1997 action films and explores how markers of local identity help localize Chinese Canadian performers into the star system of Hong Kong.

  • Keywords: Charlene Choi, 1997 handover, Canada, 1.5 generation, return migration, repatriation, Twins

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