Creative animation director Zekai Zhang has made his latest venture, a short film titled “Purple and Blue.” Known for his animation skills and creation of popular characters, Zhang has ventured into a new realm by writing and directing this emotionally charged narrative.
At its core, “Purple and Blue” is a tale of love, loss, and the power of memory. It narrates the poignant story of A Shan, a man engulfed by the memories of his late wife, Xiao Tang. The film portrays A Shan’s struggle as he grapples with the grief of losing Xiao Tang to a disease. Overwhelmed by his emotions, he starts interacting with his smart home device, which he affectionately names after his wife.
The film takes the audience through a journey of A Shan’s memories, filled with the echoes of Xiao Tang’s voice mails, reminiscences of her smile, her favorite foods, and the festivals they celebrated together. It is a heart-wrenching depiction of a man who is unable to move forward, trapped in the past.
A unique aspect of “Purple and Blue” is the incorporation of a smart home device named “Xiao Tang,” which becomes a focal point in A Shan’s life. In a compelling turn of events, the device, resonating with A Shan’s feelings, plays a critical role in preventing a tragic end and offers a glimmer of hope.
Zekai Zhang’s inspiration for “Purple and Blue” stemmed from a real news story about a middle-aged man who coped with the loss of his wife by writing her daily letters. This heart-touching narrative sparked the idea of the voicemail feature in the film, leading to the creation of the smart home device “Xiao Tang.” Zhang’s film stands out as it integrates his expertise in animation with his production skills, marking it as his first project to blend these two elements seamlessly.
Before “Purple and Blue,” Zhang founded an animation company in Shanghai and achieved acclaim for his creation of multiple beloved characters. “Purple and Blue” is a testament to his evolution as a filmmaker, showcasing his ability to weave animation with a profound narrative.
“Purple and Blue” is more than just a film; it’s a journey of emotions, a blend of technology and human feelings, and a testament to the enduring power of love. It starts with a somber tone but gradually warms the audience’s hearts with its compassionate ending. Zekai Zhang, with this film, has not only told a touching story but also set a high standard for emotional storytelling in his career as an Animation Creator. It is the winner of Stockholm City Film Festival and also the award winner of Sweden Film Awards 2023.