Film studio in Tainan still in conceptual stage: Premier

Premier Lin Chuan (??) confirmed on Sunday that the government is considering plans to transform state-run Taiwan Sugar Corp's (Taisugar) Shalun Farm in Guiren, Tainan, into an international film studio, but added that the project is still in the early stage.

Lin was responding to a post earlier in the day on the Facebook page of Tainan Mayor Lai Ching-te (???) stating that Shalun Farm will become an international film studio because the premier has approved a proposal by Taiwan-born Oscar-winning film director Ang Lee (??) to build such a film studio.

According to the Facebook post, Lin gave the nod during a meeting with Lee earlier this month at which the two men exchanged views on the development of Taiwan's entertainment and media industry.

Lin not only expressed support for the proposal but was optimistic that the project would help nurture and retain local professionals in the industry and attract film directors from around the world to shoot films in Taiwan.

The premier also said that such an entertainment and tourism oriented project would boost the economy, adding that the Ministry of Culture should include the proposal as one of its policies, Lai said in the post.

The farm covers an area of 951 hectares and is close to Taiwan High Speed Rail (THSR) Tainan Station, National Highway No. 1 and No. 3, Taiwan Expressway 86, Tainan Airport and Anping Harbor, providing convenient transport to and from the area. These conditions have persuaded Lee that the location is excellent for the development of an international film studio, according to Lai.

Lin said on the sidelines of a Hakka festival on Sunday that Lee had discussed the idea with him and he has directed staff to learn more about Lee's plan, adding that Tainan City government has some of its own ideas about how to proceed, but noting that the plan is currently still in the early conceptual stage.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel