CAN Digital Commission No.5 Casting Fu Manchu

1st - 31st December 2020

A new film by Eelyn Lee exploring the idea of Yellow Peril in light of the coronavirus.


Many thanks to everyone who watched Casting Fu Manchu, part of the 2020 CAN digital commissions programme.

Casting Fu Manchu is an exploration of Yellow Peril in light of the coronavirus. In 1912, when Sax Rohmer invented his character Dr. Fu Manchu – the evil Chinese doctor set on world domination – Yellow Peril was rife. Often painted as a faceless existential threat to the ‘Western world’, East Asians were seen as a force that needed to be suppressed. With successive white actors ‘yellow-ing up’ to play the fictional villain, including Boris Karloff and Christopher Lee, Eelyn’s film will subvert these racist tropes through re-imagining Fu Manchu for 2021.

Eelyn Lee is an award-winning artist and filmmaker who has exhibited across UK including Barbican, Tate Modern, National Portrait Gallery and Whitechapel Gallery as well as internationally in Paris, Berlin, Bogotá and Toronto. Her socially engaged practice combines collective research, devised theatre, screen writing and filmmaking to create frameworks for ensembles of collaborators to work together. Her Chinese/English heritage motivates her interest in race, identity and ’othering’. She is currently developing a narrative feature film exploring empire and race with a twist on the western and horror genres.


Subscribe to the Chinese Arts Now Newsletter

Join our newsletter to receive the latest news and updates from Chinese Arts Now, from show and festival updates, to opportunities and vacancies. 

If you are an artist and would like to be added to our artist newsletter, please email

You have successfully subscribed