A still from the film, Chinese Laundry - the dancer is situated in front of a full washing machine. She has the hood of her hoody up and is looking cautiously at the camera.


“A real celebration of the nuance of identity. I loved it” – Hannah Maia, SHAFF judge.

Chinese Laundry, a Tala Lee-Turton Production, directed and choreographed by Patricia Zhou, is a short dance film about a British Chinese immigrant experience of trying to fit in. The film retells a story Tala hears from her Chinese family, second generation immigrants from Hong Kong who grew up in South Yorkshire, in a Barnsley takeaway shop.

The film is set in a dry cleaners, a business set up by Tala’s father when he was her age now, and frequently segues into an escapist dreamscape in the expansive vastness of the Peak District. This reflects the cyclical banality and frustration experienced from within the daily grind of the dry cleaners, contrasting with aspirations to feel freely Chinese and British and part of the richness that is the surrounding geography.

Chinese Laundry seeks to share its immigrant story as one of many in a fantastical visual celebration of multifaceted South Yorkshire life. It explores the act of listening to stories passed down through families so that we may carry past generations’ heritage with us.

Gold winner in the Made in Sheffield category at Sheffield Adventure Film Festival (ShAFF), screened at the Showroom Cinema in Sheffield 3rd – 5th March 2023. Premiered on Girls in Film and screened at We Wonder Noir festival at Wentworth Woodhouse, the Showroom Cinema as part of South Yorkshire Film Hub’s Showroom Shorts and Berlin Short Film Festival between March 2022 and March 2023.

Creative producer – Tala Lee-Turton

Director and choreography – Patricia Zhou

DOP – Arthur Loveday

Dancer – Tala Lee-Turton

Editor – Patricia Zhou

Colourist – Sofie Borup

Stylist – Chelsey Clarke

Creative consultant – Rebecca Zhou, Jas Rewkiewicz

Production adviser – Sara Turton

Location scout – Helen Brown

SHAFF (Sheffield Adventure Film Festival) 2023 Best Made in Sheffield Gold award logo in hte shape of a laurel wreath with wording.
Laurel wreath for French Riviera Film Festival 2023.
Laurel wreath for official selection at Berlin Short Film Festival 2023
Laurel wreath for Dumbo Film Festival 2023 semi finalist.
Laurel wreath for Showroom Shorts - Sheffield Filmakers Network at the Showroom Cinema Sheffield.

Special thanks to RELOAD, We Wonder Noir, Wentworth Woodhouse Preservation Trust, Rockingham House Cosmetic and Implant Dentistry, Angie McMahon, Tom Lee.

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