Global interest in Chinese sci-fi growing: reports

Sci-fi writers Chao Xia (L), Wang Jinkang (C) and Liu Cixin at the China Science Fiction Convention, Beijing, April 28, 2024. /CFP

Sci-fi writers Chao Xia (L), Wang Jinkang (C) and Liu Cixin at the China Science Fiction Convention, Beijing, April 28, 2024. /CFP

Chinese science fiction, led by titles of Hugo Award winner Liu Cixin, has seen growing global interest and media exposure in recent years, according to two newly released reports.

The global search trend and media reports about Chinese sci-fi works had been on a steady rise between 2018 and 2023, according to a report on the overseas footprint of Chinese sci-fi.

The report, compiled by the China Science Fiction Research Center and the Academy of Contemporary China and World Studies, was released at the eighth China Science Fiction Convention, which concluded on Monday.

“The Three Body Problem” by Liu Cixin has led Chinese sci-fi novels in terms of overseas influence, while films adapted from Liu’s “The Wandering Earth” are the top influencer in the movie category, the report said.

“Big IPs (like Liu’s works) can become a trailblazer. They have piqued interest in Chinese sci-fi and prompted the translation of other Chinese works into various languages,” said Ji Shaoting, a member of the science fiction committee of the China Writers Association.

She noted that a similar trend has emerged in Japan, with numerous Chinese science fiction titles being published in Japanese, fueled by the immense popularity of “The Three Body Problem.”

Another report on the global impact of “The Three Body Problem” intellectual properties indicates that elements drawn from Chinese history and culture are particularly embraced by international fans of Chinese science fiction, surpassing other aspects such as human emotions and advanced technology.

Nearly 80 percent of overseas interviewees have expressed a wish to understand China after watching the Chinese TV adaptation of “The Three Body Problem,” according to the report jointly released by China Science Fiction Research Center and Tencent Horizon.

“Many sinologists I met in Europe are excited about ‘The Three Body Problem.’ They told me that the work has sparked an enthusiasm for studying the Chinese language,” said Wu Yan, a renowned researcher on Chinese sci-fi.

Source(s): Xinhua News Agency