That Day, on the River

In Lei Lei’s That Day, on the River, newspaper clippings, historical photographs and a film about a female basketball player serve as the source material for an exploration of his father’s childhood in provincial China.
“‘In fact, I’ve been doing well in school since I was a child,’ my father smiled. In 2016, my father and I travelled to Ningdu by bus to do preliminary research for my animated feature film Silver Bird and Rainbow Fish. We did the field recording and looked for the house where he lived as a boy and the bridge he walked on to the school. During the trip, we talked about his childhood memories and things he wasn’t good at.” Lei Lei
by Lei Lei
with Lei Jiaqi, Lei Lei, Lu Yue
People’s Republic of China 2023 Mandarin 39’ Colour World premiere


  • Lei Jiaqi
  • Lei Lei
  • Lu Yue


Director Lei Lei
Screenplay Lei Lei
Editing Lei Lei
Music Lei Lei
Sound Lei Lei, Li Xingyu
Sound Editing Mark Lee
Producer Lei Lei

Produced by

See-Ray Studio

Lei Lei

Born in Nanchang, Jiangxi Province, China in 1985, studied Animation in Beijing. Since 2017, he has worked in the Experimental Animation Faculty of the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts). Breathless Animals is his first feature-length film.


2009 Pears or Aliens; 4 min. · The Universe Cotton; 4 min. · Magic Cube and Ping-Pong; 5 min. 2010 Hululu Honglonglong Hualala; 6 min. · This is LOVE; 3 min. 2011 My... My...; 5 min. 2012 Big Hands Oh Big Hands, Let It Be Bigger and Bigger; 6 min. 2013 Recycled; 5 min. 2014 This Is Not a Time to Lie; 4 min. 2015 Missing One Player; 4 min. · Books on Books; 7 min. 2016 Hand-Colored No.2; 5 min. 2019 Breathless Animals; 68 min., Forum 2019 · Breathless Animals 2020 A Bright Summer Diary; 29 min. 2022 Silver Bird and Rainbow Fish; 104 min. 2023 That Day, on the River

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2023