A seminar on the documentary A Year in Tibet by famous writer and director Sun Shuyun was held Saturday in Beijing and drew a big crowd of scholars to discuss the work's implications and influences since it was released last year.
The five-episode documentary, filmed in Gyantse, the third largest county in Tibet Autonomous Region, records the life of eight Tibetans and their everyday ups and downs. The crew spent a year following a village shaman, a doctor, a junior Party official, a hotel runner, a rickshaw puller, a builder and two monks from Palkor Monastery.
A young monk standing in front of a giant picture of Buddha.
Sun's work presents a changing Tibet where local people bound by tradition face the challenges of rapid progress and where customs survive among burgeoning modernity. A Year in Tibet offers a panoramic insight into the real lives of the local people.
"It was very courageous for Sun to shoot a documentary in Tibet and it has been very difficult for her to present the most extraordinary place in the world to the outside in an objective and smooth way," commented Liu Xiaoli, a well-known documentary expert.
"Here is neither an imaginary Shangri-La, nor a wild place as many people would think and what I want to present to the world is a true and dynamic Tibet from itself, the lives of Tibetans, their happiness, their sorrows and most importantly their daily lives," Sun told the Global Times.