Friday, August 20, 2010
Mao's Last Dancer
L.A. Times: Li Cunxin is one of the most talented ballet stars ever to emerge from China, but his biggest claim to fame happened far away from the stage.
In 1981 while a resident at the Houston Ballet, Li defected to the United States in an incident that involved a 21-hour standoff at the Chinese consulate and negotiations that ultimately led to the dancer's safe release.
This week, a movie based on Li's life opens in Los Angeles and other select cities. In a parallel to its protagonist's travails, the production experienced its own friction with the Chinese government that forced the filmmakers to shoot significant parts of the movie in secret. Read more