Chinese mega production filmed in Helsinki / screenshot of series

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This season, Helsinki's snowy landscape will captivate millions of viewers across China as it becomes the backdrop for a unique TV series. The show, which has brought Chinese celebrities to Finnish shores, has also attracted the attention of paparazzi from China.

For the past few weeks, a remarkably large Chinese film crew has been sighted navigating through Helsinki's city center, drawing the attention of many with their extensive equipment and personnel transported by numerous vehicles.

This filming locations have included Eliel Square and near the Storyville restaurant.

The Chinese television drama "Amidst a Snowstorm of Love" is set to captivate a vast audience with its anticipated viewership reaching into the tens of millions.

An extensive crew of over a hundred members from China, complete with elaborate set and costume departments, was brought to Finland for the production. Starring in the series are Leo Wu and Angel Zhao, both widely celebrated stars in their homeland.

 

The promotional clip for this love story showcases well-known Helsinki landmarks, including the Stockmann department store and the distinctive green carriages of VR trains, with filming locations spanning areas like Vallila, the vicinity of the Central Railway Station, and Töölö.

"Paparazzi traveled from China to capture shots of the stars, and we saw an increase in Finnish-Chinese youth gathering at our shooting locations," Klaus Heydemann, Inland Film Company's executive producer told Finnish media.

Inland Film Company, based in Helsinki, emerged victorious in a competitive bid to serve as the local production service for the series. Heydemann remarked on the production's unparalleled nature, noting its distinctiveness within the Finnish film industry.

"The size of the crew was significantly larger than what is typically seen in Finland, by two to three times," he observed.

The series is a venture of the Chinese powerhouse Tencent, recognised as one of Asia's leading corporations. The main production responsibilities in China were handled by Jian Xing Xing Guang Film and Television Co., Ltd., with Europe Film & Tv Co-production overseeing European filming activities. The drama series "Amidst a Snowstorm of Love," is based on a novel by Mo Bao Fei Bao and set to air on Tencent's streaming platform.

The plot of the series, as the name suggests is a love story set in China and abroad: Yin Guo, an accomplished billiards champion, finds herself in New York for a prestigious open tournament. It's there that fate introduces her to Lin Yi Yang, an encounter that blossoms into something more as they spend time together. Yin discovers that Lin is not only deeply passionate about billiards but also exceptionally skilled. However, his past is marked by youthful arrogance and a crucial mistake that led him to abandon the sport he loved, choosing exile over compromise for over a decade. Yet, his passion for billiards remains unextinguished.

Lin is immediately smitten with Yin, and his love for her ignites a determination to win her heart. His pursuit is relentless, fueled by a desire not only for love but for redemption in the eyes of the world and himself. Motivated by his feelings for Yin and a longing to reclaim his lost dreams, Lin decides it's time to make a triumphant return to the competitive billiards scene. This decision marks the beginning of a journey not just to win back his honor but to secure a future with Yin, proving that second chances can lead to fulfilling long-held dreams.

 

The decision to film in Finland was driven by the pursuit of a snowy setting, and  was influenced by its attractive film production incentives, with Business Finland's support system playing a key role.

The filming kickoff at the Vallila Machine Workshop was marked by traditional Chinese rituals including the offering of incense sticks and bowing in all four directions.

Heydemann was struck by the universal nature of filmmaking, highlighting the smooth collaboration and professional dedication across the board.

"Once production began, our shared language was that of our work and collective endeavor," Heydemann eloquently put it.

The premiere of "Amidst a Snowstorm of Love" in China was set for February 2nd, with Tencent Video providing a platform for potential international distribution, including availability for Android users in Finland. Several episodes are already available on Youtube and all include numerous familiar sceneries of Helsinki. Storyville Jazz Club serves as the iconic "Red Fish" in the story. Helsinki's metro and trains can also be seen frequently as the scene of romanic encounters between the main characters.

The potential for international distribution, particularly interesting to Finnish audiences, remains uncertain at this stage.

As Helsinki played host to this mysterious mega-production, the local and international buzz surrounding "Amidst a Snowstorm of Love" underscores the growing interest in cross-cultural film and television projects. With its blend of Finnish scenery, Chinese storytelling, and the universal appeal of romance, the series stands as a pioneering example of the dynamic possibilities within the global entertainment industry. The production and extensive collaboration between professionals from both countries is an example of healthy cultural exchange during these times of devision and artificially erected political walls. As it has happened before with iconic Korean and Chinese series filmed abroad, the locations of this series will most probably become pilgrimage spots for the fans, bringing thousands of Chinese visitors to Helsinki in the future.

 

HT

 

 

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