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Home >> Life
UPDATED: 16:33, May 25, 2005
Chinese-interpreted The Gadfly
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Photo:The happy time of Arthur and Gemma
The happy time of Arthur and Gemma
In 1897 Ethel Lilian Voynich, a British authoress published a novel telling a story of Italians resisting invaders during the 19th century. The novel is well received in China and became a foreign classic that has influenced three generations.

Recently Chinese movie and TV men began their new interpretation of the novel. Produced by the Publicity Department of Shenzhen Municipal Party Committee and Vanke Film and Television Co. a TV drama series of the same title, which casts Ukrainian and Russian actors and was shot in Poland, Hungary and Ukraine, has been finished. Producer Zheng Kainan, who made another well-received work adapted from The Making of Steel in a similar way, said: "The Gadfly links at the one end the past and at the other the present day. At the one end it is China, at the other it is the world."

The crew first asked a renowned Ukrainian author, who adapted The Making of Steel, to write the first draft based on the Russian version of Gadfly, then the Chinese playwright Zhou Qiyue to write the second draft. After years of preparation and nearly eight months of filming a Chinese TV drama version of The Gadfly came into being.

What is worth mentioning is that Ms. John Hinton, grandniece of the original author Voynich, has been living here since she came to China in 1948. The silver-haired and sanguine lady said she had no idea when she was little that Voynich had written such a novel until she came to China. She met Voynich in New York in 1945. By then Voynich was already very old. Even then she did not mention the novel to her grandniece. Ms. Hinton said she liked China very much and the broad influence of the novel in China made her very proud. The fact that the Chinese TV men could come to the idea of adapting a TV drama series from the novel and adhere to the original spirit commanded her admiration. She looked forward to the airing of the TV dram series in China.

According to sources sale of the series went well in Russia, Japan, S. Korea, Singapore and other Southeast Asian countries. It is expected to make debut in China in the latter half of this year.

By People's Daily Online

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