Apple Shares 'Shot on iPhone 13 Pro' Film Celebrating Chinese New Year

Apple today shared a short film called "The Comeback," which has been released in celebration of Chinese New Year. Created by director Zhang Meng, the video kicks off the Year of the Tiger with the story of a father, a son, and a forgotten village with an "out-of-this-world dream."


The 23 minute film was shot using the latest iPhone (which is the iPhone 13 Pro) like all of the videos in Apple's ongoing "Shot on ‌iPhone‌" series. Though filmed in Chinese, Apple has also added English subtitles for those who do not speak the language.

Chinese New Year, or the Lunar New Year, begins on Tuesday, February 1, 2022, and it is a major holiday in China and other countries. Apple previously shared a Chinese gift guide on its websites in China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Macao that features iPhone 13 models, AirPods, and more.

Apple also introduced special edition AirPods Pro and special edition Beats Studio Buds with custom-designed tiger themes as 2022 is the Year of the Tiger on the Chinese calendar.

Top Rated Comments

citysnaps Avatar
9 months ago

$1500 dollar phone ... $1,000,000 in equipment and talent.
This video is not for the perpetually cynical, or those lacking creativity and stuck with sclerotic imaginations. Rather, it’s for people with fertile imaginations that still have a sense of wonder and able to dream about the possible. And most importantly, haven’t yet been admonished about what is impossible. A $1,000,000 budget for equipment and talent is certainly not required.

A 12 year old Steven Spielberg, after earning a photography merit badge in Boy Scouts, borrowed his father’s 8mm film movie camera and with a bunch of neighborhood kid friends for actors made his first short film, The Last Gunfight.

The iPhone as a video camera, or as a still camera, has a ton of potential for anyone who has vision, curiosity, imagination and the drive to create. Even if it needs to be borrowed from one's father or mother.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
citysnaps Avatar
9 months ago
Excellent! It's about creativity and imagination, not camera gear. As it always is.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
movielad Avatar
9 months ago
It very much reminds me of a Chinese version of Michel Gondry's "Be Kind Rewind" where the whole community comes out to make a movie. It's a love letter to cinema, the imagination and people coming together to share a passion. This is one of Apple's best ads yet IMHO.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
movielad Avatar
9 months ago

Cool! I wonder how many iPhones they used!
And how long it took to transfer all that ProRes footage ;)

Let's hope the iPhone 14 Pro models come with USB-C and Thunderbolt/USB-4 speeds this year.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Adarna Avatar
9 months ago

This video is not for the perpetually cynical, or those lacking creativity and stuck with sclerotic imaginations. Rather, it’s for people with fertile imaginations that still have a sense of wonder and able to dream about the possible. And most importantly, haven’t yet been admonished about what is impossible. A $1,000,000 budget for equipment and talent is certainly not required.

A 12 year old Steven Spielberg, after earning a photography merit badge in Boy Scouts, borrowed his father’s 8mm film movie camera and with a bunch of neighborhood kid friends for actors made his first short film, The Last Gunfight.

The iPhone as a video camera, or as a still camera, has a ton of potential for anyone who has vision, curiosity, imagination and the drive to create. Even if it needs to be borrowed from one's father or mother.
The popularity of iPhones today is equivalent to those of the Kodak Brownie ('https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kodak_Brownie') from 122 years ago.

Imagine if Steven Spielberg was born 3 years after the iPhone 1st came out.

The tools accessible to a middle class household today would allow for better than those 1959's Oscar Award winning titles.

Few people think beyond the box and imagine their smartphone being used to tell a fictional story unless you're in the industry.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Adarna Avatar
9 months ago

To be honest, it doesn’t look that spectacular. Not worth bragging that it was shot on an iPhone. We can clearly tell that it was shot on a phone, and not on a professional camera.
Market positioning of this is not to replace IMAX cameras or for this to be used in the future MCU features.

It is targeted at entry-level.

At $999-$1,599 it is relatively cheap compared to dedicated cinematic hardware with the bonus of it being able to do near FCP-quality edits in-camera. Can anyone point to any ProRes camera at that price point?

Once the project is wrapped up the owners of the hardware can repurpose them to become.... smartphones again.

The story of this feature is that of a working-class stunt double, his father and the declining rustbelt of a town coming together on a below indie budget. Essentially a sci-fi tourism flick if your thing is all about Mars. In a country of a little over 1.4 billion even a fraction of a fraction of a percent is enough to get people to do tourist things there.

iPhones & Androids cameras were not that good pre-2012. 2012 was when point & shoots and DSLRs peaked. After that it was a straight global shipment decline. I believe this year would be mirror the worldwide volume of year 1999.

This video is good as it shows Apple is trying to expand to other market and is probably the reason why this year's iPhone Pro and Pro Max will finally get USB-C 40Gbps.

Its a brilliant story... from Kung-Fu flicks that is a very original Chinese/Hong Kong export of decades past to today's sci-fi flicks like the Wandering Earh ('https://www.netflix.com/title/81067760'). It highlights the rich cinematic history of a growing market.

Now, if you have no plans to make money from this then it just elevated your household's home video or even corporate videos for SMEs.

I was asked by my boss if we should be buying an R5c ('https://www.theverge.com/2022/1/20/22892766/canon-eos-r5c-announced-specs-release-date-cost') for internal training videos. I replied that an iPhone 13 Pro Max instead for our trainer and have them edit it on a gaming laptop. We do not need it to win any Academy award. We just want to making training videos for tasks that that need to be taught to new personnel or as a refresher to old.

The lovely thing about any iPhone vs any Canon EOS Cinematic camera is that the iPhone can be financed at cost by our telco for 24-36 months and have an alternate use with SMS/voice calls/data while the Canon is just.... a camera.

So say $1,599 iPhone divided by 24 or 36 months is = $66.63/month or $44.42. To produce that flick I would not be surprised if they used about a dozen or so Max's to for dedicated visual and dedicated audio.

Adorama/BH can do financing of up to 12 months with anything bought on their store? Bodies like the R5c does not even come close to costing $1,599. Then you need to add lenses that cost the equivalent to an iPhone and its equivalent function is just that.

What will differentiate this video from that of say most Max users would be workflow, thinking process, creative process and production timeline discipline.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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