Director Biography – Jialei Li (INVASION)

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Jialei Li is a director and writer. His seven years’ experience of filmmaking study both in China and the United States gives him inspirations and passion. As a film festival rewarded Director, he focuses on the visual effects in films and always makes his films as art works. With his strong passion for visual storytelling, he keeps listening to his heart and observing the world in a unique and inspiring way. He’s recently just finished his new work “Invasion” as the director, he led his crew efficiently to achieve the effect and demands he expected. Before that, he had made and join in many short films as a director and other departments. He graduated with a BFA and a MA degree in filmmaking at New York Film Academy; He’s aiming at becoming a successful film director and creating more outstanding works.

Director Statement

Invasion is a horror film which is about a film crew who broke into an old abandoned house to shoot a horror film. After they wrapped, the actor of the main character was possessed by a ghost and killed all the crew members.
The thought of what this script expresses is “everyone is responsible for their actions”. In the film, the film crew break in an abandon house and film without permission, that is a forcibly prohibited thing. They decide to do it and end up paying for their actions. Doesn’t matter if you are breaking into other peoples house for making a film or pulling out a sword from the stone, everything must be reasonable.
I wrote this script because I’ve been afraid of horror movies for a long time. The elements in the horror like sudden screams, creepy faces, the ghost hiding behind the corner are the things that always make my heart blast. Then I began to think that these films were just a kind of a prank by their directors, they play tricks on their audience. On the other hand, I thought horror films are low budget films, they don’t have good visual effects or logic. Also, they are just some people who act as ghosts to scare other people. I refused to watch these films until I saw James Wan’s work and some other notable directors. I was totally shocked. It had been years that I couldn’t find a logical film like this. I asked myself, “are they really all bad”? I started to like horror films because I found that they have their unique charm. Today’s audiences have been trained smart and more logical, it’s not an easy thing to scare an audience. Filmmakers should have better skills at controlling the pacing, telling intriguing stories, or using original ideas to present to the audiences. I want to be among the best of them.
I have been studying filmmaking for six years and during my studying period I have made different kinds of films such as suspense, love story, western, etc. As a person who wants to be a good director, I want to develop my ability to challenge and adapt to any film style instead of being shackled in one particular style. I want to do something different.
I want to try to create some horrible plots and atmosphere to show my understanding of horror films. And I think those elements, such as film in film, dreams, self-awareness and so on, are very attractive, so I try to fuse them together in this film to increase the dramatic aspect of this story.
For me, it is a try of writing a horror film, it might be a failure, but what I‘m strongly trying to express is everyone is responsible for their actions. I accept this challenge.

Ratings

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