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Taiwanese movies have earned a high reputation in international film festivals over the past few years, giving a different impression of Taiwan, with its vitality of soft power and culture, to the whole world. Last year, the number of tourists to Taiwan reached a record of 5,567,000; to keep the number rising, the Tourism Bureau is targeting 4 categories of tourists: young backpackers, senior couples, young women, and families. A brand-new international promotional film was shot, using movie production values for the first time, to incorporate the island’s natural beauty and cultural diversity into a short film. The beauty of Taiwan is shown through both images and sound to portray Taiwan’s warmth and hospitality to from tourists around the world.
The most meaningful element of a trip is “people”, who give tourists their most lasting memories, and it is friendly interpersonal relations that make Taiwan a unique destination for tourists from all over the world. The Tourism Bureau invited director Johnason Lo, who has won international Promax, iF Design, and red-dot awards, and Michael Fimognari, a well-known photographer with two Emmy awards to his credit, to help produce the film, “Time for Taiwan—My Beautiful Island”. The film takes a completely different perspective, and focuses primarily on interpersonal relations at their most unique. The film is designed in a way that escapes the constraints of a rigid government promotional film, and also abandons the old fashioned style of a drama or a scenic-spot-oriented film. The images in the film are seen through eyes of four groups of tourists and through their stories in Taiwan, which show vividly the excitement and discovery they experience during their journey.
The film combines two themes -- “International Spotlight” and “Tour Taiwan, Experience the Centennial”-- along with Taiwan’s folk religions, folk culture, aboriginal tribes, hot springs, innovation, contemporary culture, hiking, and eco-tourism. The film is the product of a full year of planning and shooting. Four versions with different lengths have been produced: 16 minutes, 10 minutes, 60 seconds, and 30 seconds. Foreigners who watch the film share the feeling of a high-quality frame, a different impression of the beauty of Taiwan, and an exceptionally warm welcome from the Taiwanese people. Furthermore, the foreign actors who participated in the production expressed their excitement at so many first experiences in Taiwan. Mark, a young American man who stars as a back-packer in the film, has already spent 6 years in Taiwan. This production brought him to Old Zhuilu Trail for the first time, where he experienced the grandeur of the alpine scenery. David and Lea, a senior couple, were impressed with Taiwan’s innovative fine cuisine and it good use of local ingredients. They followed chef, Chih-Yung Chen, to select fish in Suao port, and enjoyed a tour of deliciousness. The executive producer from Singapore, Angela Moo, mentioned that even though she has worked in Taiwan for many years and participated in numerous film productions on the island, this time she had the opportunity to visit many unique spots that are different from what can be seen in the travel books. She also mentioned her deep interpersonal experiences with Taiwanese people, which is what makes Taiwan so attractive to tourists.
The end of a trip is not the end of a journey. Instead, it is the beginning of the next one. A trip can produce in tourists valuable memories and a desire to come again. This is what the film, “It’s time for Taiwan”, tries to tell everyone in the world: come experience this beautiful island. Please visit (http://taiwan.net.tw) for more information.