Red Sorghum (TV series)

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Red Sorghum
GenreWar drama
Based onRed Sorghum by Mo Yan
Written byZhao Dongling
Directed byZheng Xiaolong
StarringZhou Xun
Zhu Yawen
Huang Xuan
Yu Rongguang
Qin Hailu
Ending themeJiu'er (九兒) by Han Hong & Hu Shasha
No. of episodes60
Producer(s)Cao Ping
Production company(s)Shandong TV
Qingdao Golden Phoenix Film & Television Culture Company
Flower Film & TV
Original networkBeijing TV
Shandong TV
Zhejiang TV
Dragon TV
Original release27 October (2014-10-27) –
17 November 2014 (2014-11-17)

Red Sorghum (Chinese: 红高粱) is a 2014 Chinese television series based on Nobel laureate Mo Yan's 1986 novel of the same name. Directed by Zheng Xiaolong, it also features the highly anticipated return of actress Zhou Xun to television after 10 years.[1] The series chronicles the struggles of the protagonist Jiu'er (played by Zhou) in rural Shandong province in early 1930s.[2][3] It aired simultaneously on four satellite television channels from 27 October to 17 November 2014 for 60 episodes.



To reproduce the scenes of the novel, the Gaomi local government planted more than 200 hectares of sorghum. The field, now known as “Red Sorghum TV Production Base”, became a shooting site for the TV series. More than 500 local residents performed as extras in the TV show.[4][5]


The series premiered to rave reviews online on Weibo and has enjoyed good ratings. It topped the ratings on four satellite TV channels for three weeks during its broadcast; and has been viewed more than 1.4 billion times on major streaming site iQiyi.[6][4] According to Qilu Evening Post, the series also spawned viral greetings. Xinhua News Agency praised the drama, calling it a “classic in Chinese television history” and Hainan Daily called Zhou an "impeccable performer".[5]

However, the series has been criticized the series as "too commercial" and "losing the touch of authenticity. The casting of Zhou in the role of the 19-year-old protagonist has also sparked a controversy.[5][3]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Nominated work Result
2014 China TV Drama Awards Top Ten Television Series Red Sorghum Won
Best Actress Zhou Xun Won
Outstanding Contribution Award Zheng Xiaolong Won
2015 Shanghai Television Festival Best Television Series Red Sorghum Nominated
Best Director Zheng Xiaolong Nominated
Best Actor Zhu Yawen Nominated
Best Actress Zhou Xun Won
Best Supporting Actor Huang Xuan Nominated
Best Supporting Actress Qin Hailu Won
Huading Awards Best Television Series Red Sorghum Won
Best Director Zheng Xiaolong Won
Best Actress Zhou Xun Won
Best Actor (Revolution-Era Drama) Zhu Yawen Nominated
Best Supporting Actress Qin Hailu Nominated
Best Supporting Actor Huang Xuan Nominated
Best Newcomer Nominated
Best Producer Cao Ping Nominated
Flying Apsaras Awards Best Director Zheng Xiaolong Nominated
Best Actress Zhou Xun Nominated
Hengdian Film and TV Festival of China Best Actress Won
2016 China TV Golden Eagle Award Best Director Zheng Xiaolong Won
Best Cinematography Won
Best Art Direction Nominated
Best Lightning Nominated

International broadcast[edit]

Country Network(s)/Station(s) Series premiere Title
 Thailand Modernine TV August 1, 2015 tảnān rạk thùng s̄ī pheling (ตำนานรักทุ่งสีเพลิง[7])
Oh!K Oct 13,2017 Wed To Fri 17:50 (SIN)
16:50 (JKT/BKK)
18:55 (HK)


  1. ^ "Zhou Xun to lead TV adaptation of 'Red Sorghum'". August 14, 2013.
  2. ^ "Zhou Xun as teen in 'Red Sorghum'". November 6, 2014.
  3. ^ a b "Film star Zhou Xun plays teen in TV's 'Red Sorghum'". Sina.
  4. ^ a b "Mo Yan moved to tears by adapted TV series of his novel". October 28, 2014.
  5. ^ a b c "Southern softie". Week in China.
  6. ^ "Zhou Xun fills Gong Li's shoes in a remake of Red Sorghum". The Straits Times.
  7. ^ "พบกับ"Red Sorghum ตำนานรักทุ่งสีเพลิง"ซีรีย์สุดอลังการจากแดนมังกร". MCOT. 16 August 2015. Retrieved 15 July 2015. Thai: ภาษาไทย

External links[edit]