Taiwan and China will be allowed to collaborate in filming TV series beginning next month and the productions will be eligible for Taiwan’s Golden Bell Awards, the Government Information Office (GIO) said yesterday.
GIO Minister Su Jun-pin (蘇俊賓) told reporters the Department of Broadcasting Affairs had drafted guidelines governing the collaboration and that they were scheduled to take effect next month.
The guidelines divide personnel involved in the filming into three categories: actors; main production personnel — including producers, directors and script writers; and technical specialists in charge of filming, lighting, sound recording, sound effects, editing and animation.
The guidelines stipulate at least 30 percent of the personnel in joint production projects between Taiwan and China should be Taiwanese, while the number of Chinese cannot exceed one-third.
However, the participation of other nationalities will not be limited.
Other principles mandate that main sets, both inside and outside the studio, should be located in Taiwan. Post-production work such as editing, special effects and sound effects should be completed in Taiwan unless equipment or technologies are not available.
Moreover, promotion of communism and campaigns aimed at promoting unification between Taiwan and China will not be allowed to participate in joint productions, and no symbol of the Chinese Communist Party can be shown unless it is judged necessary.
Ho Nai-chi (何乃麒), head of the Department of Broadcasting Affairs, said that qualified collaboration projects would be viewed as “home productions” by each party and are therefore not required to be reviewed before production.
They will also be eligible to run for Taiwan’s Golden Bell Awards, which honor the country’s top TV shows.
Noting that the guidelines were drafted earlier this year, Ho said they were put off because of concerns from the Taipei Show Business Union that the liberalization would encourage producers to replace Taiwanese actors with Chinese.
Ho said that joint productions would raise the number of TV projects undertaken and increase acting opportunities for Taiwanese actors.
“As television advertising continues to decrease, Taiwanese TV stations have to rely on foreign markets because they cannot survive on one single market,” Ho said, adding that he believes that only through joint productions can Taiwanese TV series become prime time programs in China.
“It will create a virtuous circle, with actors having more opportunities as their popularity rises, and TV stations will make more money from commercials and licensing fees, which will give them the means to invest in more productions,” he said.