How a Chinese movie became talking point as PM Modi met top Bollywood stars

Written By: Sidhant Sibal Edited By: Sparshita Saxena WION
New Delhi, India Updated: Oct 20, 2019, 10:26 AM(IST)

PM's event was attended by Bollywood bigwigs like Aamir Khan, Shahrukh Khan. Image was tweeted by @iamsrk. Photograph:( Twitter )

Story highlights

PM Modi, while interacting with film stars, recalled his interaction with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Mamallapuram and talk about the impact of Chinese movie 'Dying to Survive'.

As Prime Minister Narendra Modi interacted with Bollywood stars and other members of the film and entertainment industry on Saturday evening, the popularity of Indian movies and the impact of a Chinese movie 'Dying to Survive' became a major talking point.

PM's event was attended by Bollywood bigwigs like Aamir Khan, Shahrukh Khan, Rajkumar Hirani, Kangana Ranaut, Anand L Rai, SP Balasubrahmanyam, Sonam Kapoor, Jackie Shroff, Sonu Nigam, Ekta Kapoor, among others.

PM Modi, while interacting with film stars, recalled his interaction with Chinese President Xi Jinping in Mamallapuram and their talk about the impact of Chinese movie 'Dying to Survive' which shows how a Chinese man is able to smuggle low-cost affordable cancer medicines from India that can save lives of many Chinese.

The film was a hit at the Chinese box office garnering more than $453 million and was among the top 3 hits of 2018 in the country. The movie is based on a real-life incident involving Yong Lu from Wuxi in Jiangsu province, eastern China who helped many Chinese patients get cheaper medicine for leukaemia from India.

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The movie started a major debate in China on the need for low-cost life-saving cancer drugs. Even the Chinese Premier Li Keqiang called for the need to "further streamline the registration and approval of new anti-cancer drugs", news agency Xinhua was quoted as saying.

China imports around $25 billion worth of pharma products of which a minuscule $44 million are imported from India, which New Delhi hopes will change. India has been calling China to allow greater market access for Indian pharma products which can help narrow the $55 billion trade deficit. Several Indian pharma majors such as Ranbaxy, Dr Reddy’s Laboratories, Aurobindo Pharma and Matrix Pharma are present in China.

While 'Dying to Survive'  is a Chinese movie, with links to India, Bollywood movies have also been popular in the country and are gaining more popularity in recent times. Many Bollywood movies like '3 Idiots', 'Dangal', 'Secret Superstar', 'Bajrangi Bhaijan', 'Hindi Medium', 'Toilet – Ek Prem Katha' and 'Andhadhun' have scored big at the Chinese box-office.

During his Mamallapuram visit, President Xi Jinping had highlighted to PM Modi the popularity of Indian films in China. Both countries have an agreement for co-producing movies, first of which was on the life of monk Xuan Zang who visited India in the 6th century.

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