Documentary Filmmaking

Documentary Filmmaking

Mandarin Film is an award-winning documentary production company which has worked on many of the largest TV and feature doc projects to be made in China, and has produced and directed a vast range of domestic and international documentaries.  Genres include science, arts and culture, current affairs, history and wildlife.


Story Lab
Whether it be an idea originated within Mandarin Film, work on story development ideas for a project that is already taking flight, or an invitation to pitch, we specialize in stories with Chinese content for an international audience and dedicate ourselves to making these stories explode into life. 


Dream Team
Being a through-and-through bilingual team we are able to put together lineups of the best domestic and international talent and experience China has to offer.  Our long experience of producing in China means we have the experience, know-how and contacts to find the latest and greatest stories and gain the best access.  Key skillsets in our team include story development, research, script writing, location scouting, fixing, logistics, budgeting, film crew and film equipment hire and post production including editing, transcription, subtitling etc.


Working with the World’s Best
Having worked with many of the world’s most prominent broadcasters like the BBC, PBS, National Geographic, Discovery, Sky, ITV, The History Channel and more, Mandarin Film is now increasingly also working for domestic Chinese national broadcasters like CCTV9, CCTV10, CICC, and regional satellite broadcasters like Beijing TV and Shanghai Media Group.  Check out our co-production chops below for ways that East and West are coming together.


Multi-platform documentary
As everyone in the industry knows, documentary production does not stop at TV anymore – in fact increasingly it doesn’t even start at TV!  The world of social media and online content has opened doors to nascent forms and styles of documentary which are waiting to explode.  In China the new trend is for fifteen to thirty minute ‘micro-films’, which Mandarin Film has also produced with success, co-producing with Chinese broadcaster CICC. 


From small screen to big - Mandarin Film has made a long and distinguished list of feature docs for theatrical release, as well as award-winning series and one off documentaries, and docs designed for NGOs and other organizations for major international conferences and Internet. 


Some great examples include Green China Rising, a one hour documentary co-production between National Geographic Asia and CICC which Mandarin Film produced from conception to delivery, How Much Does Your Building Weigh, Mr Foster?, a feature documentary that won awards across Europe and which Mandarin Film produced the China and Hong Kong parts of, and Thirsty Earth a micro-documentary made for CICC for a domestic and international audience.


Check out more of our past documentary work.