The Last Movie Poster Painter of Taiwan


So the other day I bought a ticket in Taiwan, hopped on a high-speed train, and arrived in the city of Tainan, where I met this guy painting Keanu Reeves. Hey guys, I’m at Chuan Mei Theater. It is one of the oldest existing movie theaters left in Taiwan, It is 70 years old. And it’s also one of the few places that still paints their movie posters completely and entirely by hand. Yan Jhen-fa is the painter, and he’s been painting for the last 50 years. And of the thousands of posters that Yan has painted, he says this one of the movie Logan is his favorite. He finished this painting in one day. It’s incredible In addition to its posters, this theater also has other old-school relics like this film projector and this signaling system that projects announcements on the side of the screen. But theaters like Chuan Mei aren’t just beloved for their nostalgic factor. They’re also cheap. They show second-run movies for just under $5. But these places are almost all gone. Second-run theaters, which show movies weeks after they’ve already come out, started going out of business in the early 2000s, when DVDs came about. And nowadays with online streaming, the theaters that are still going don’t make much profit. So in his spare time, Yan Jhen-fa has begun teaching art classes. These movies, have you seen all of them? Or just some? Just some of them. So a lot of these paintings here are by his students. He says he has about 500 different students. What’s really cool about this job is I get to meet a lot of cool artists. And we have actually profiled people from Beijing, to Shanghai to Sichuan. Check out this video for more and don’t forget to subscribe to Goldthread2.

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