Despite much lawsuit hearsay regarding the movie’s lack of attaining proper licenses (required by the country’s Cinema Laws) for a public release, Khat Vong Thang Long has finally made it to theaters nationwide.

Khat Vong Thang Long/Aspirations of Thang Long is the first movie that focuses on the life of Ly Cong Uan, founder of the Ly Dynasty, in celebration of Hanoi/Thang Long’s 1000th year anniversary. This 110-minute long film is produced by Ky Nguyen Sang company with the collaboration of talents such as director Luu Trong Ninh, brothers Charlie Nguyen and Johnny Tri Nguyen (who were in charge of scriptwriting and martial arts choreography, respectively). After much anticipation, the movie officially premiered  on November 5th following its local release in Hanoi on October 18th to 500 attendees.

The storyline takes place 1,000 years ago in ancient Dai Co Viet (former name of Vietnam circa 1009 A.D.) and highlights the life events of Ly Cong Uan or more commonly known by his posthumous title as Ly Thai To (Great Founder Ly). The first king of the Ly Dynasty is credited for having moved his nation’s capital from the mountainous region of Hoa Lu to the more alluvial plains of Dai La and then changing its name to Thang Long (Rising Dragon). This precedence marks a milestone in Vietnam’s nation-building history after a long and tumultuous era of constant warfare. Furthermore, the movie spans from Ly Thai To’s childhood to the height of his political career and brings to life scenes of old Vietnam through everyday activities in the Hoa Lu marketplace, along the Dai La river, traditional clothing and weaponry of the archaic Vietnamese people. Many shots from the movie is filmed at different landscapes throughout Vietnam, including Ha Noi, Ninh Binh, Thua Thien Hua and Dac Lac.

The success of this movie must also be attributed to costume designs by Bao Chi. From clothing donned by little buffalo herders, silk spinsters, to soldiers in the royal court, every outfit evokes characteristics that are distinctly Vietnamese. It is revealed that the exhausting, but thorough, casting process was well worth the effort. After careful consideration, Ngô Mỹ Uyên, Quách Ngọc Ngoan, Leon Quang Lê, Thạch Kim Long, Thu Trang, Thúy An, and Hương Giang were chosen as main characters, much to the satisfaction of director Luu Trong Ninh.


Casting (Making of)

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3D setting studies (released at the beginning of year)

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Trailer (released in August)

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Press Release:

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Behind the Scenes gallery:

Via Kinh Te & Do Thi