Started by jenkins, June 19, 2018, 01:05:46 PM
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
QuoteGolden Harvest was established in 1970, the beginning of a critical period which, in many ways, marks a turning point in the history of Hong Kong cinema. The advent of free-to- air television not only brought new challenges to the film industry, but also nurtured a fresh crop of talent. The relaxation of film censorship led to a rise in depictions of violence and sex; Cantonese was beginning to overtake Mandarin as language of choice for mainstream productions; and independent filmmaking by small companies was booming. Golden Harvest was not only part of these different trends and developments, but was often a driving force behind them. Commercially speaking, Golden Harvest established itself as a rival to Shaw Brothers as early as the 1970s, and was unquestionably the most successful of all new film companies of the period. It maintained its status as a major player in the industry throughout the 1980s and 90s. Indeed, it may be argued that Golden Harvest has been the most commercially successful and stable film company in Hong Kong from 1970 to 2000. This Golden Harvest research project coincides with our work on the Hong Kong Filmography series, which has stepped into the 1970s. It also marks a continuation of our previous research efforts into two major Hong Kong film companies before the rise of Golden Harvest – Cathay Organisation and Shaw Brothers.Yet unlike Cathay and Shaws, Golden Harvest developed a business strategy of diversification. It owned a great number of satellite companies which worked and filmed for Golden Harvest, but from time to time, it engaged the services of film companies from outside as well. It also delegated different aspects of its business to a variety of partnering companies. For instance, Golden Communications was a company responsible for the overseas distribution of Golden Harvest films, as well as the filming and production of Hollywood features. All Golden Harvest films were developed by Cine Art Laboratory, and although the two companies worked closely together for many years, Cine Art was not, strictly speaking, part of Golden Harvest. Only in 1991 did Golden Harvest formally acquire Cine Art, just before it became listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Making sense of the complex web of relations between Golden Harvest and these othercompanies is both a challenging and necessary task. To cite an obvious example, Golden Harvest went public in 1994, but this only involved its film distribution businesses; film production remained private. Misunderstandings can easily arise if such distinctions were not made clearly. This book mainly focuses on the film production businesses of Golden Harvest, and there is relatively little discussion on Orange Sky Golden Harvest Entertainment (Holdings) Limited, a branch of Golden Harvest that deals mainly with film distribution.