Yellow is Forbidden Submitted to Oscars

Yellow is Forbidden , an eye-opening documentary on Guo Pei, by talented Pietra Brettkelly, has been submitted to Oscars as New Zealand’s submission for the Best Foreign Language Film category.  


Brettkelly followed Pei for two years while she was preparing for her spring/summer 2017 show at the La Conciergerie in Paris. The idea to profile Pei came to Brettkelly while sitting on her sofa eating custard. She had just finished Flickering Truth, which saw her spend two and a half years in Afghanistan following Afghan cinephiles trying to retrieve more than 8,000 hours of film footage they concealed during the Taliban era. She was flicking through her folder of creative inspiration in search for her next project and found a note about Pei’s ornately carved shoes. She booked flights to China with her cinematographer, Jacob Bryant, and went to track down Pei just days later.


“I’m really interested in other people’s isolation,” the New Zealand-born director tells Vogue of what captured her imagination in Pei’s story: “Isolation can bring out some extraordinary things, because there’s a purity of vision. Guo Pei doesn’t have all the inspirations of the West, but she strives for acceptance there. She treads the line between assimilation and acceptance.”


The movie’s title –– Yellow is Forbidden –– was taken from the designer's youth, when she dreamed of a yellow dress, which her grandmother forbade to even think about.

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