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Great Wall Across the Yangtze

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The Film


Ellen Perry

Having studied cultural anthropology, Producer, Director and Videographer Ellen Perry has traveled extensively throughout Europe, Asia and the western Pacific islands, documenting the land and people through still photography and video. Perry holds a degree in cinema/television production from the University of Southern California, and has produced, directed, photographed and edited numerous narrative shorts including KEEPERS OF THE FLAME, LOST IDENTITY and THE CYCLE. She has also art directed several films including SUGARED PEAS, which screened at First Look. She has published film criticism articles and she is currently working on a feature screenplay. GREAT WALL ACROSS THE YANGTZE is her first documentary production. (Read an interview or take the Yangtze Tour with Ellen Perry.)

Martin Sheen

Narrator Martin Sheen launched his acting career as the lead in the Broadway play The Subject Was Roses and went on to receive a Golden Globe nomination for his leading role in the film adaptation. Probably best known for his performance as Captain Willard opposite Marlon Brando in the classic film APOCALYPSE NOW, his feature film credits also include WALL STREET, HEARTS OF DARKNESS: A FILMMAKER'S APOCALYPSE, DA, BADLANDS and THE AMERICAN PRESIDENT. Sheen currently stars as the U.S. President on NBC's The West Wing. His other television credits include roles in Babylon 5: The River of Souls and the television miniseries Medusa's Child. In 1998, Sheen received the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award from the Imagen Foundation, an organization that honors positive portrayals of Latinos in media. He also received Golden Globe nominations for Best Performance by an Actor in a Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television for the 1993 miniseries Kennedy and for Best TV Actor for the miniseries Blind Ambition.

Audrey Ronning Topping

Writer Audrey Ronning Topping is author of Dawn Wakes in the East, The Splendors of Tibet and a recent memoir called Charlie's World: The Improbable Adventures of a Hong Kong Cockatoo and his American Family. She specializes in Asian cultures and religions and has made 12 journalistic forays to all parts of China. Her numerous articles and photographs have appeared in The National Geographic, Foreign Affairs, The New York Times Magazine, Life, Horizon and Newsweek. She wrote a documentary for the National Film Board of Canada, CHINA IN REVOLUTION, and was assistant producer of The Forbidden City for NBC Television. She is a member of the Council of Foreign Relations and the Society of Woman Geographers.

Editor Kim Roberts received her master's degree in documentary production from Stanford University. Her film MIRIAM IS NOT AMUSED (1996) won a Student Academy Award, Golden Gate Award at the San Francisco International Film Festival, a Silver Apple at the National Education Media Network and has screened at over a dozen international film festivals. Roberts has also worked as an editor, writer and producer on numerous independent films including on THE GATE OF HEAVENLY PEACE (ITVS 1995) which won a Peabody Award. She worked as second editor on LONG NIGHT'S JOURNEY INTO DAY, which won the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance Film Festival 2000.

Executive Producer Stephen J. Moffitt is a pioneer in the field of computer graphics. He has contributed to the design and development of the word's most advanced graphics workstations as a design engineer and director of graphics software at Silicon Graphics, Inc. After receiving a bachelor's degree in neuroscience from Brown University, Moffitt researched three-dimensional imaging applications at Rhode Island Hospital and the University of Colorado. He has worked as a writer and editor and has been a long-standing supporter of social and environmental causes internationally.

Composer Zhou Long is one of the leading Chinese avant-garde composers. He is known for the unique coupling of ancient Chinese music tradition with Western compositional techniques. Zhou Long's works have been recorded and performed by the Central Philharmonic of China, Los Angeles and Russian Philharmonics, the London Symphony, and the Kronos and Shanghai Quartets. He has been honored by Masterprize BBC, EMI, London Symphony, American Academy of Arts Fellowship, Mary Cary Trust and Aaron Copland Fund and the Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship.

Associate Producer Vanessa Warheit received her master's degree in documentary production from Stanford University in 1999. She produced, directed and edited the documentary CONSTRUCTING EXPERIENCE: THE MANY LIVES OF TREASURE ISLAND, which has aired on PBS and NBC. Recently she worked with Telling Pictures on the award winning documentary PARAGRAPH 175. She currently freelances as a television news writer, documentary researcher and video editor.

With twenty-five years of experience in both public and commercial television broadcasting and independent filmmaking, Danny McGuire, executive producer of GREAT WALL, is the director of production at KQED-TV. He has nearly 200 original programs and series to his credit as their producer, director and/or executive producer. A maker of diverse documentary programs and performing arts specials, he has received more than 30 television and film industry honors, including Emmy Awards and an Oscar nomination. McGuire is a governor on the board of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, and a program fund advisor for the National Endowment for the Humanities. He is also a frequent guest speaker at schools and industry conferences about video/film production and station/independent producer relationships.

Consulting scholar Elizabeth Childs-Johnson, PhD, is a specialist in ancient Chinese art and Chinese archeology. She is responsible for initiating interest both locally and abroad in the cultural heritage of the Three Gorges. Focusing her research on the Late Neolithic Jade Age and early historic Bronze Age of China, she has studied the little-known cultures of the Three Gorges area and demonstrated their significance with regard to the southern, Yangtze River Valley's contribution to Chinese civilization.

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