Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Nice legs, shame about the face

Previously on A Boy and His Blog:
"I was going to post about Taiwan's relationship with China, but then I saw this:"

Your regular programming has been pre-empted to bring you the following special blog-cast:


BEIJING (AFP) — The little girl who starred at the Olympic opening ceremony was miming and only put on stage because the real singer was not considered attractive enough, the show's musical director said.

Pigtailed Lin Miaoke was selected to appear because of her cute appearance and had not sung a note, Chen Qigang, the general music designer of the ceremony, said in an interview with a state broadcaster.
Um, just, wow.

Just so you know, the hideous child, Yang Peiyi, is the one on the left.

Chinese officials recommend you not look too long because... well... you know.

I have to admit that as I was watching a rebroadcast of the opening ceremonies, I wondered if the child was lip synching because the mouth didn't seem perfectly synchronized to the music.

When I watched Sarah Brightman and Chinese singer Liu Huan I didn't think their lips were synchronized properly either, but I leapt to the conclusion Brightman wouldn't perform to playback, so I assumed the sychronization problem was just latency in the stadium's audio system.

Now I wonder.

In Other Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremony News
I didn't see the footprints fireworks in the opening ceremonies rebroadcast I watched on the CBC, but apparently NBC's included a little bit of trickery they weren't completly transparent about.

They faked them.

(Boing Boing) The fakery was unearthed by a local Chinese newspaper, The Beijing Times, which revealed that a 55-second sequence was created by a visual effects team, which included a series of giant footsteps made by fireworks.

Confusingly, this actually took place in the real ceremony, but the organisers felt that the sequence of 28 footprints would not be accurately captured live, so they faked it.

This was the disclaimer during the broadcast:
Lauer: "You're looking now at the footsteps of history, quite literally, coming from the old center of Beijing, near Tiananmen Square, to the new area of Beijing, this national stadium, along the north-south axis. You're looking at a cinematic device (my emphasis) employed by Zhang Yimou here -- this is actually almost animation (my emphasis). A footstep a second, 29 in all, to signify the 29 Olympiads. "

Costas: "We said earlier that aspects of this opening ceremony are almost like cinema (my emphasis) in real time. Well, this is quite literally cinematic."

Lauer: "This is signifying China's march of history outward from the center of Beijing, And now the footsteps arrive at the stadium."

I'm not sure I would have fully understood what was meant during what is supposed to be a live broadcast.

For me "almost like cinema" is not full disclosure.

Recreation of an event for news purposes can be a useful way to tell the story.

In photojournalism, it's called a photo illustration (my emphasis), and reputable photographers will emphasize to their editors the importance of disclosure to the readership.

Reputable editors will not have to have the importance explained and will be slightly annoyed.

But the disclosure will happen.

Um, just, wow.

Related Links
China Olympic ceremony star mimed [BBC]
China digitally fakes 2008 Olympics fireworks [Boing Boing]
NBC Olympics [Official site]

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