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Lecture by Director Chang, Fan-chun on “Talking Science with Images - Narrative and Knowledge Translation of the Popular Science Program Gene Revelation.”

Date : 2022-12-23 Department : International Master's Program in International Communication Studies
【Article by IMICS】
On Nov. 24th, a famous director Chang, Fan-chun (張颿駿) gave a speech titled as “Talking Science with Images—Narrative and Knowledge Translation of the Popular Science Program Gene Revelation” in the Controversial Science, Media, and the Public class IMICS taught by professor Tsung-Jen Shih. This documentary screening and its post-screening talk was sponsored by the long-standing science magazine—the Science Monthly(科學月刊).

Director Chang, Fan-Chun, specializing in the area of popular science documentary, has won a number of film awards, including the finalist of the 57th Golden Bell Awards in the category of “General Program Director,” the winner of “Natural Science Documentary Program” in the 57th Golden Bell Awards, the winner of “Natural Science Documentary Program” in the 54th Golden Bell Awards, and the winner of the “Natural Science Documentary Program” in the 52nd Golden Bell Awards.

During the three-hour session, Director Chang not only played his new popular science film Gene Revelation, but also gave an impressive speech regarding the process of completing his work.

“The challenge that we faced at the beginning of producing this film is how to make the words of scientists understandable to children, so I received a great amount of training at that time,” Chang said.

According to Chang, another challenge encountered is deciding what scientific data would be used in the film since in the field of genetics, there is too much data and no exact direction to be abided by.

Meanwhile, as the film script would be read by a producer who is from a communication background and also scientists, these two parties would constantly offer revision opinions, and in the end, Chang said he would easily fall into an endless revision.

“I once participated in a project, and the way they wrote the script was that after the pre-interview with the scientists, the words of the pre-interview were directly typed out and wrote into the script,” said Chang. “There must be no problem when the content is undergoing review because it’s definitely correct, but it’s just nothing like the script of a show.”

When asked by a second-year student Ruby Chien about the criteria of choosing the topic of the film, Chang said he usually chose the most novel and interesting one to shoot.

“For example, when I was doing a children’s popular science program, I chose a famous scientific demonstration experiment of mixing corn flour with water, in which the texture of the corn flour will change according to the strength you put in,” explained Chang, “Since people are more familiar with these kinds of topics, I believed they will be more willing to watch it.”

A special thanks again goes to Professor Tsung-Jen Shih for organizing the speech and to two second-year IMICS students Albert Yu and Peggy Lo for contributing their effort as interpreters during the lecture. IMICS is also excited to host more and more speeches on a variety of themes and invites everyone to join in our splendid learning journey!

Author: Meryl Kao (IMICS 110)
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