Beauty and the Clown

The story of a young delivery guy who dresses like a clown to deliver flowers on his scooter and has a crush on a girl in a rock band.

Creative team

Writer/director/producer: Shen Shen

Filmmaker’s statement

My inspiration for the story came from real clown delivery guys I saw in Beijing.

A clown’s job is to make people laugh by making himself looking like a fool. Yet nobody seems to pay any attention to who he really is underneath that costume. A clown is like everyone else, wanting to love and be loved.

Then I began to think how he would react to someone he likes – especially a beautiful girl that’s out of his league. The story started to take shape from this point on.

As I was writing the story, I felt deeply connected to the clown. He is young and inexperienced but his mind is full of fantasies and dreams, just like me and everyone else in our youth.

When we were young, we liked to dream big and always had crushes on the wrong people. Yet these dreams were so unrealistic they would make us do stupid things and end up just like a clown.

When the clown runs into the girl in the end, she doesn’t even recognize him. This is the moment at which his fantasy is shattered completely by the harshness of reality. And in the last shot, he drops his clown nose, which is a token to say farewell to his youth. He has parted with his childish dreams and is stumbling into the real world. This is the price we must pay to grow up.

I shot the story mostly in the Gulu area, east side of Beijing, because this is my favorite spot in the city. This is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Beijing, full of history and culture. Yet it’s also one of the most vibrant and artistic districts in the city. You can find so many unique and artsy shops and cafes hidden inside the hundreds of years old hutongs (alleys). Gulu is a perfect mixture of art, history and everyday life.

About Shen Shen

Shen Shen

Shen Shen is a young Chinese-Canadian filmmaker who has been living in Beijing, China for the past five years and worked in the local film and media industry as writer, associate producer and production manager of a variety of multi-cultural short films, feature projects and commercial content.

In 2012, she made her first short film The Breaking. It was selected for the 2012 Winnipeg Real to Reel Film Festival and 2012 Canadian International Micro Film Festival.

In 2013, she wrote and directed Beauty and the Clown. She was interviewed by the Hong Kong newspaper South Morning Post about her experience in indie filmmaking. One of the feature scripts she wrote began pre-production this year.

Shen Shen’s aspiration as a filmmaker is to create inspiring and unique stories that are a great blending of both Western and Chinese cultures and give each story a feminine touch.

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