Wang Renmei, The Wildcat of Shanghai in Photographs

The following images are stills from the films of Wang Renmei, with commentary by Richard J. Meyer author of Wang Renmei: The Wildcat of Shanghai.

Wang Renmei
Wang Renmei plays Black Clown, who is killed at the end of Soaring Aspirations. Her death inspires the villagers to fight to the bitter end. She is reunited with co-star Jin Yan who married her after the completion of the popular film Wild Rose.

Wang Renmei
Wang Renmei, in the film The Morning of a Metropolis, plays Xu Lan’er, who visits her brother in jail. The movie was Wang’s second big hit and led to her being cast in the early sound film Song of the Fishermen. That film became an international success.

Wang Renmei
Wang Renmei performing on stage in Sons and Daughters of Wind and Cloud. The script was written by Communist Tian Han who was hiding from the Guomindang police. Throughout her career Wang acted both on screen and in live theater.

Wang Renmei
Wang Renmei plays Ah Feng, a singsong girl, in Sons and Daughters of Wind and Cloud. She sings Nie Er’s song, “The Singsong Girls Under the Iron Hoof,” which inserted a note of patriotic urgency into the film. The composer died young, but one of his marches was adopted as the National Anthem of the Peoples Republic of China.

Wang Renmei
Wang Renmei plays Little Cat in Song of the Fishermen. She and her brother Little Monkey are poor fishermen who are exploited by the evil fish monger. The cast shot the film in a really poor fishing village on the coast. The actress identified with those who suffered. Later, the film was the first Chinese movie to receive international recognition at the Moscow film festival in 1934.

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