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Joyful Life

Year :


  • Taiwan
Color :
Running Time :
56 min
  • Society
  • Human Interest
  • Generation
  • Youth
  • Senior


Joyful Life is a feature documentary in collaboration with Hansen’s disease (Leprosy) patients residing at Taiwan’s Lo-Sheng (“Joyful Life”), one of the few remaining sanatoriums in the world, on the verge of disappearing.

Lo-Sheng (“Joyful Life”) leprosy colony was established in 1930 on the Sinjuang hillside in the outskirts of Taipei, Taiwan’s capital. As many as 1,100 patients lived in Lo-Sheng. In 1954, Lo-Sheng’s isolation policy, which severely restricted residents’ civil liberties, was finally lifted. As a result, leprosy patients had the choice to remain, to leave, or to self-admit, which deeply transformed the community.

In 2002, more than one-third of Lo-Sheng was destroyed due to subway construction and other pending urban development projects. As a result, more than half of the 300 remaining residents moved into the newly constructed hospital nearby. Due to resident, student and human rights activism, plans for total destruction have stopped. At this point, the sanatorium remains despite continued pressures from the government, private interests and local civilians to excavate.

Conceived as a collaboration among the residents of Lo-Sheng, a Taiwanese-American filmmaker, documentary students, and cultural workers, Joyful Life presents diverse perspectives of Lo-Sheng residents in the midst of their activism to preserve Lo-Sheng and not be moved to a nearby hospital. Filmmaker-lead workshops prepare residents for their own storytelling and filming - creating an intimate portrait of a historically marginalized community and their inspiring determination to protect what they call their home.

Source: Anita Wen-Shin Chang's website

Festivals & Awards

2006 Taiwna International Documentary Festival
2006 Echo Park Film Center Human Rights Film Festival
2006 Austin Asian American Film Festival (AAAFF)
2006 The Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival
2006 Fukuoka Asian Film Festival
2006 Taiwna International Documentary Festival
2006 Fukuoka Asian Film Festival


  • Cinematographer
  • Script Writer
  • Producer
  • Executive Producer
  • Cinematography Assistance
  • Cinematography Assistance
  • Cinematography Assistance
  • Composer
  • Actor
  • Cinematography Assistance
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