Telling big stories with a
pocket-sized camera

Learn how director Sha Mo shot his movie Kids of Paradise with the Galaxy S21 Ultra.

Gone are the days when filmmaking was for only big movie studios and established icons. What once involved multi-camera setups, technical lighting and big bags of cash can now be done with a single device that fits right in your pocket. Anyone with a smartphone has the power to craft compelling stories through film. In partnership with Samsung, Chinese director Sha Mo did just that, creating his new short film, Kids of Paradise, using only the Galaxy S21 Ultra.

Young boy from the film Kids of Paradise wearing a pointed hat. Young boy from the film Kids of Paradise wearing a pointed hat.

A rising young storyteller

Despite being only 31, Mo is no stranger to directing or the Chinese film market, with his movie Love Will Tear Us Apart reaching number one at the Chinese box office. In his upcoming short film, Kids of Paradise, Mo works with young hard-of-hearing actors to tell a tale of childhood friendship. He saw working with these actors as the perfect opportunity to showcase their perseverance in the face of adversity, an idea reflected in the film itself.

A fairy tale told with visual poetry

Trained at the Beijing Film Academy, Mo has directed five works, including Black Fish, Senior Teacher, Honey Trap and My Huckleberry Friends. Producing both colour and black-and-white movies, his stories paint a picture of humanity through different lenses. With Kids of Paradise, Mo tells a new story. “This is a fairy tale about the relationships between the individual and the collective,” he says. The film centers on two child protagonists, Douzi and Fatty, and an oversized hat. What starts out as an everyday case of classroom bullying soon develops into a story of forgiveness and friendship. Using the hat as a vehicle for the message also adds to the story’s charm. As Mo explains, “Short film is a kind of visual poetry.” So what better way to bring that poetry to life than with Galaxy S21 Ultra?


“I didn’t feel like I was shooting with a phone.”

—Sha Mo on filming with the Galaxy S21 Ultra

Director's View
Choose your angles and control your shots like a pro.

Taking mobile filmmaking to new heights

The Galaxy S21 Ultra has an advanced array of features for aspiring filmmakers. “It’s intuitive for the director to choose the shots and consider the setting of the scenes,” says Mo of Director's View on the Galaxy S21 Ultra. For cinematographer Li Jianeng, picture quality is a top priority—and the Galaxy S21 Ultra gives you the very best. It’s been built to capture those crisp, detailed visuals and ultra-smooth gimbal-like shots you expect in a film. With this kind of power in your pocket, the options for creative filmmaking are limitless.


Quality. Portability. Convenience.

Mo never questioned whether it was possible to make a movie on a phone. “I always felt like it was the perfect tool to express my ideas,” he shares. The portability and convenience of a smartphone was a major advantage for him and his team in the production of Kids of Paradise. Rather than adding difficulty, working with a smartphone actually provided him moments of surprise: “I didn’t feel like I was shooting with a phone. It enables us to discover life, to discover characters and to pay attention to the bits and pieces around us,” he says. Despite the smaller-sized equipment, he believes our desire for self-expression will grow only larger. Today is the era when anyone can bring their imagination to life with a smartphone and some creativity.

The young actors of Kids of Paradise in a classroom setting, two hands holding a clapper board in front of them. The young actors of Kids of Paradise in a classroom setting, two hands holding a clapper board in front of them.

Ready to call “action”?

Start production on your own film using the Galaxy S21 Ultra and Director’s View.

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It's your turn

Follow @SamsungwithGalaxy on Instagram to find inspiration from our creator community, then share your photos #withGalaxy

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