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The Deer’s Bell

19m Animation 1982

Language: Chinese, with English subtitles


Synopsis The Deer’s Bell is a Chinese animated film styled with traditional Chinese ink painting, produced by Shanghai Animation Film Studio in 1982. The film is based on the beautiful legend of White Deer Grotto Academy, directed by Tang Cheng and Wu Qiang, and written by Sang Hu. The film is about an old herb farmer’s granddaughter saving a young deer from an eagle when collecting herbs. Thereafter, the young deer and the little girl build a deep bond while living together; later, when the young deer finds its parents and decides to go away with them, the little girl ties her bell around the young deer’s neck. This story shows how humans and wild animals can build a deep connection.

Curators’ Notes In this beautifully made ink painting animation, the utterance is no longer needed as affection flows smoothly through the poetic use of traditional Chinese ink brush. As the unique and last work of the first female director of animation in China, Cheng Tang,, The Deer’s Bell is a multi-awarded film for its technological innovations at both domestic and international festivals.

Assistant Director

Cheng Tang / Qiang Wu






Shanghai Animation Film Studio