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What Budding Chinese Directors Need to Know About Wang Lijun

Feb 15, 2011
By Pang Lei

Every February, newspapers around China are full of stories about the brave and often attractive young people who are applying to be admitted to the Beijing Film Academy.

The number of applicants to the prestigious film school, which has trained many well-known Chinese directors, including Chen Kaige and Zhang Yimou, has increased over recent years ratcheting up the odds for those hoping to be accepted.

According to a recent reports, over 25,000 people initially applied online to enrol for a total 455 positions at the school this year, up 20 percent on the previous year.  However, when it came to deciding to register for the entrance examintation, only a little over 18,000 of those students decided to go ahead with their application, down about 1,000 on last year's total. Of those 18,000 applicants, 6,186 applied to enrol at the School of Performance Art, which is only seeking 85 students this year, meaning that each of these students only has a 1 in 73 chance of being admitted to the program.

The film academy attracted even more attention this year after it was revealed online and later in a report carried by yesterday afternoon's Beijing Evening News, that this year's exam paper for students seeking to enrol in "artistic style" courses at the school had included some very interesting questions.

According to reports from microblog users claiming to be students who had sat the test on Monday, students had been asked questions that touched upon a whole range of topical issues including Guo Meimei, tainted milk powder, the Wenzhou train crash, the controversy surrounding measurment of PM2.5 air pollution, which Beijing restaurant the U.S. vice-president ate at during his visit last year and slang terms used to refer to lesbians.

There was also a question about Wang Lijun, the high-profile former head of the Chongqing public security bureau who has dominated online chatter - if not newspaper headlines - over the past week due to rumors that he had been flown to Beijing by public security agents after meeting with officials at the American consulate in Chengdu last week.

According to the Beijing Evening News, students were posed the following question:

Which of the following people is least connected to Wang Lijun?

A. Wen Qiang
B. Wang Yang
C. Bo Xilai
D. Liu Yong

Links and Sources
Beijing Evening News: 北京电影学院导演系初试“王立军”入考题
Sina: Image
CNTV: 1.8万人报考北京电影学院 表演系考录比1.37%
CCTV: [视频]北京电影学院招生考试昨天开始


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