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Bears’ brave, kind and talented visitors

Just last week, the brave film crew who spent two years filming undercover in six provinces of China to the terror and brutality of bear farms across the country, won a major prize at a film festival in Ya'an. Elsa, Chen Yuan Zong and Tu Qiao received the top award for "Best Educational Value" for their film “Moon Bear”, at the Fifth China Ya’an International Panda, Animals and Nature Film Week.

The powerful film took a further two years to make.

After their win, prominent Government official, our longtime and dear friend, Madam Yang, shared a comment on her blog. She simply stated: "Gratified! Congratulations! Salute!"

Cameraman Chen Yuan Zhong spoke for the film crew, supporters in China and across the world, and all in the team of Animals Asia when he commented on his blog: “Moon bears, you got the award, do you hear?”

Elsa Xiong Jun Hui, Chen Yuan Zong and Tu Qiao – thank you from the bottom of our hearts – we salute you.

Elsa (whose surname "Xiong" means "bear") and Chen Yuan visited our sanctuary on their return from the film festival. They wanted to share with the bears the beautiful trophy they had received for their film, which has been viewed over 1.4 million times across China. And they wanted the chance to experience, even just for a moment, how it felt to be confined to a cage so small.

The whole crew has been so utterly committed and dedicated to this film – and we are endlessly grateful for all the help and publicity they have given to China's tortured bears. It was a great privilege to have Chen and Elsa on site. Chen later sent us these beautiful, moving photos of that very special day.







And here with Elsa, Chen and our Beijing team from left – Susan, Dan Fang and Toby.

Elsa micro-blogged about the photo of the trophy in a cage – a barbaric contraption that had once trapped a moon bear for many long years. Elsa’s comment was:

Glory in a cage

The glory was born from the cage, and yet it’s still trapped by the cage – moon bear, when can you breathe freely?


Click here to watch “Moon Bear” and to read all about Elsa, Chen and Tu Qiao and their heroic filming under conditions that risked their lives – and the justice of China's film industry that awarded them for their bravery.

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