The animated documentary, Eternal Spring by director Jason Loftus, which will represent Canada, was submitted for nomination for an Oscar for Best International Film. Telefilm made the announcement on Wednesday, October 5.
Based on true events, the film recounts how Falun Dafa practitioners risked their lives to intercept the Chinese television signal to counter the CCP’s censorship, defamation, and repression campaign.
The story and animation of the 3D documentary were created by Chinese artist, Daxiong, who tried to reconstruct the events that occurred 20 years ago in his homeland, Changchun, China.
Daxiong, the comic book artist (from Justice League and Star Wars), is a Falun Dafa practitioner who fled China when the brutal persecution by former Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leader Jiang Zemin began in 1999.
The Chinese artist proposed to draw Eternal Spring (長春) after meeting a practitioner who participated in the Chinese TV signal intervention.
On May 4, Eternal Spring was featured in Hot Docs Audience Award and won the Rogers Audience Award for Best Canadian Documentary. It also took first place in the general audience poll of internet moviegoers.
Eternal Spring was chosen as the winning documentary out of 225 documentaries from 63 countries at the Hot Docs festival.
The successful film opened in Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, and major theaters in the United States. On October 14, it will be released in Australia, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.
Revealing the truth to Chinese society
Since the CCP began persecuting Falun Dafa (also known as Falun Gong) practitioners, it has used its state apparatus for arrests during raids, censorship, and its own media to defame them in Chinese society.
In this context, on January 23, 2001, Xinhua, the official CCP news agency, “reported” the so-called Tiananmen self-immolation.
This incident showed five people, in a religious suicide attempt, setting themselves on fire in Tiananmen Square in Beijing, claiming to be Falun Dafa practitioners.
Following the news, several independent researchers and international media revealed that the images shown by the official TV were a scene staged by the Chinese regime to encourage society to participate in the persecution.
Since then, many Chinese citizens, misled by this incident, believed that Falun Dafa practitioners were dangerous and began to denounce their co-workers, neighbors, and even family members for being practitioners.
To reveal the true facts, Falun Dafa practitioners decided to intercept the public television signal and show the CCP’s lies to the people. Under the title “Self-immolation or deception?” they broadcast for 45 minutes on eight channels simultaneously, exposing the deception and manipulation of the Chinese state.
As a result, the CCP ordered the arrest of 5,000 Falun Dafa practitioners from Changchun in a massive raid, where at least seven practitioners were beaten to death.
A witness to the transmission from the practitioners, Tang Feng, said that Chinese citizens were very happy to hear the truth, but later, when they heard about the arrests and crackdown, they panicked again.
Twenty years after the incident, the Chinese regime’s control over people’s lives continues, as does the persecution of Falun Dafa.
Eternal Spring director and his wife suffer repression by Chinese regime
Jason Loftus, inspired by his wife, Masha Loftus, who was born in the city of Changchun, made the outstanding documentary.
However, the decision to pursue the project cost him six years of intimidation from the CCP.
In that regard, Loftus said that ideas should be expressed freely, and that the world should not be afraid of China’s intimidation.
The renowned director cannot conceive of a group being repressed to the point of not being able to express their ideas.
Loftus suffered censorship firsthand when the Chinese regime removed video games manufactured by his company from all stores in China.
In addition, the CCP Public Security Bureau began harassing his wife’s family.
However, Loftus stood firm and continued to be inspired by the strength of the practitioners who sacrificed to defend the truth.
“We made this to be able to share it with people, for people to be able to talk about what is happening in China, to what the Falun Gong community has suffered, to what is continuing to go on in China, with a number of groups inside China that are being persecuted by the Communist Party,” Loftus told The Epoch Times.
Artist Daxion banned in China by the CCP
On August 29, the CCP sent a new list of banned books to several Chinese schools.
Included in that list were the comics and animation drawings by the cartoonist Guo Jingxiong, known as Daxiong, creator of Eternal Spring and winner of several awards.
Daxiong may have been placed on the list of banned artists after being part of the film Eternal Spring.
But Daxiong, in 2008, was persecuted and arrested by the CCP when he made illustrations for the book Nine Commentaries on the Chinese Communist Party, which reveals the great calamities the CCP has caused humanity throughout history.
However, the CCP’s attempts to censor and defame Falun Dafa have fallen, and the truth is being revealed to the world, along with the courage and faith of the practitioners.