Now Available: Award-Winning Documentary Summarizing 15+ Years of Falun Gong Persecution In China
"The Persecution Of Falun Gong" film achieves the daunting task of summarizing 15+ years of an ongoing persecution against the Falun Gong spiritual group in ten minutes.
New York (PRUnderground) January 19th, 2016
An award-winning documentary film, “The Persecution of Falun Gong” is now released online at www.PersecutionOfFalunGong.com in English and Chinese. Produced by New York-based Swoop Films, the documentary achieved the daunting task of summarizing 15+ years of an ongoing persecution against the Falun Gong spiritual group in China within ten minutes on screen.
The film’s release coincides with the 15-year anniversary of an infamous ‘self-immolation’ event that was used by the then Chinese leader, Jiang Zemin, to justify an increase in arrests and the use of torture in the nationwide persecution. On Jan. 23, 2001, a group of people claiming to be Falun Gong practitioners burned themselves on Beijing’s Tiananmen Square. In the film, live footage and analysis of the incident indicate the burnings were staged by the Chinese regime to turn public opinion against Falun Gong.
In an attempt to answer why millions of meditators became enemies of the state, “The Persecution of Falun Gong” presents stories from eyewitnesses who saw the growth of the popular Falun Gong movement between 1992 and 1999, and the persecution that officially began on July 1999. “Hearing the testimonies from survivors was extremely moving,” says Mathias Magnason, a documentary filmmaker and the director of the film. “It is an honor to be able to include some of their stories in the film.”
One interviewee in the film, Mr. Lao Ye, an ex-Chinese Communist Party member, compares the persecution to his memories of the Cultural Revolution in the 1960s, during which millions of Chinese citizens were killed by the communist state to maintain control over the people. Mr. Ye wasn’t surprised when the government turned against Falun Gong because of its revival of traditional Chinese beliefs. “For thousands of years the Chinese people have believed in Buddhas and Daos…the communist party (CCP) brought in atheism, said all those things were wrong…Falun Gong really dared to talk about these things, immediately people took it to heart. Oh, the true ancient good things of China have come back,” says Mr. Ye in the film.
Swoop Films producer, Paulio Shakespeare, spent weeks sifting through archive footage and news reports from China to bring the story to life. “The biggest challenge is the overwhelming amount of evidence, there’s just so much content to fit into such a short piece, so where do you start?” he says. “But with the help of many friends, family, and colleagues, we managed to pull it together.”
Since its completion in mid 2015, “The Persecution of Falun Gong” has been screening in film festivals around the world, and most recently won a Spotlight Documentary Silver Film Award. Currently, the documentary is being translated into ten languages and will be released on a compilation DVD by Swoop Films in July 2016.
Watch the film now on the website: www.persecutionoffalungong.com
About Swoop Films
SWOOP FILMS is an American film production company based in New York. We create engaging documentaries and feature films with stories of divine inspiration, the supernormal, and the untold.