China’s sci-fi blockbuster inspires strengthened global cooperation in outer space for a shared future: Chinese envoy to UN
Published: Jun 03, 2023 07:21 PM
Photos: Courtesy of Chinese Permanent Mission in Vienna

Photos: Courtesy of Chinese Permanent Mission in Vienna

The Chinese envoy to the UN called for strengthened cooperation in outer space to move toward a shared future, as the profound meaning conveyed by China's sci-fi blockbuster The Wandering Earth II, at a side event of the 66th Session of the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, on Friday.

The movie, which has achieved a box office revenue of $580 million to date, is set in a future world where the sun is dying out and the Earth is facing an impending apocalypse in just 100 years. Instead of seeking refuge in spacecraft, mankind decides to take the planet with them on a journey out of the Solar System.

"Our planet is the home of all people, outer space is the common territory of mankind, and space exploration is a shared endeavor of humanity. An ocean of stars offers unlimited space for the dreams, development and progress that can be made by humankind," said Li Song, permanent representative of China to the UN and other International Organizations in Vienna. "The movie, which tells the story of a life-and-death crisis faced by humanity on Earth, portrays a united world, where countries join forces and mobilize all of our space technologies and capabilities to drive the Earth toward a new common future."

Photos: Courtesy of Chinese Permanent Mission in Vienna

Photos: Courtesy of Chinese Permanent Mission in Vienna

The Wandering Earth II illustrates that the destiny of humanity is interconnected, and in the face of global challenges, no country can survive alone. Building a global community of shared future is the only way to address common risks and challenges and overcome global problems, said Li.

"The scenes in the movie of the UN General Assembly should be so familiar to many of us. Representatives from all countries work in solidarity to adopt and advance the 'Wandering Earth Plan.' It is a telling story of the spirit of true multilateralism," Li said.

Li also pointed out that the "Wandering Earth" film series showcases the human sentiment behind China's vigorous development of space technology and active promotion of international cooperation in outer space.

China advocates for nations to work together to respect and promote the equal right of all countries to the peaceful uses of outer space, to actively address space safety challenges, and to ensure the peaceful, secure and sustainable use of outer space, said the ambassador.

Li called the "Wandering Earth" film series "a gift from the Chinese film makers to the world for the cause of international and multilateral space development" as it provides a modern inspiration for the era.

In the face of a complex international situation, building a safer and more prosperous world is the strong desire of peoples across the globe. It is the shared responsibility of all governments, and the rightful direction of progress, said the ambassador.

Photos: Courtesy of Chinese Permanent Mission in Vienna

Photos: Courtesy of Chinese Permanent Mission in Vienna

China, under the guidance of Global Development Initiative, Global Security Initiative and Global Civilization Initiative, will commit itself to cooperating with other countries worldwide to promote the building of a global community of shared future in the field of outer space, Li said.

Chairperson of the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space Omran Sharaf said at the event that in outer space, countries should strive for cooperation rather than competition, and they need to remember that there is only one human identity in outer space: We are citizens of one Earth.

Sharaf expressed appreciation to China for creating a film that unites the world through soft power and reveals the future of the world through its creativity, innovation and technological prowess.

Guo Fan, the film's director, said at the event that The Wandering Earth II is an exploration of the grand proposition of "the universe" by Chinese filmmakers with artistic fantasy, and also a tribute to the achievement of China's space science and even the world's space technology.

Since its release, the film has been well received by audiences around the world, which fully demonstrates that "science fiction" is a "universal language" across cultural differences, and that scientific and technological progress is the common aspiration of all mankind, said Guo.

The side event, organized by the Chinese Mission, and China Film Group Corporation, with more than 200 representatives attended was a positive effort to promote China's space technology and film industry to go global.

The Chinese Embassy in Austria and the Chinese Permanent Mission in Vienna also held a special screening of the film, which introduced the hit Chinese blockbuster on the UN stage.

The film is expanding its reach overseas, where it has already hit theaters in North America, the UK, New Zealand and Australia. This sci-fi prequel is one of the rare Chinese films to have such a large international release.