Ning Hao and Xu Zheng have come together again to produce a new film－Dying to Survive－as they return to the summer movie season after 12 years.
This time, director Wen Muye joins the team after Ning recognized his talent for portraying realistic themes. It was Ning who handed Wen the script and asked Xu to act in the leading role.
Wen rose to prominence in 2013 for directing the award-winning short film Battle at the first international film festival in Xining, Qinghai province. Dying to Survive is his first feature-length movie and it took him three years to adapt the script from an original piece of writing.
The film is about Cheng Yong, played by Xu, a pharmaceutical salesman who becomes a hero by helping people get cheaper cancer medicine.
The 117-minute film combines both laughter and tears, showing the humanity of one man up against the reality of society.
"It's touching because it focuses on the better side of people, and you can see how society changes, thanks to just one small act of humanity," said Xu at the film's premiere at Tsinghua University in Beijing on Monday, where it received a long round of applause after the screening.
The movie is based on a true story－Lu Yong, who was diagnosed with leukemia in 2002, helped more than 1,000 patients get cheaper, unapproved medicine from India.