An upcoming film marking the transformation brought by 40 years of reform and opening-up in Foshan, Guangdong province, is scheduled to be released across China on March 8.
Directed by award-winning female veteran Liu Shujuan, the film stars actress Jin Qiaoqiao and actor Bao Jianfeng, as well as Hong Kong star Deric Wan.
The film was previously given a limited released as the opening film of the 27th Golden Rooster and Hundred Flowers Film Festival, which was held in Foshan in November.
At an event to promote the film in the Great Hall of People, director Liu says the film is based on the story of Hu Xiaoyan, a Sichuan native who moved to work as a laborer in Foshan at 24 in 1998 and was selected as one of the first-batch of rural migrant worker deputies of the National People's Congress in 2008.
"As a female director, I saw the strength of women from Hu, who is very inspirational," says Liu.
Jin, now 44, recalls she once refused to play the protagonist when the crew reached her for the first time.
"I didn't think I could handle a character in her 20s, but the director promised that there are only a few sequences featuring the younger version," she says.
The film also marks a reunion for Jin and Bao, whose last job together was to lead the 2006 TV series The Legend of Xue Rengui.