Interview with Independent Film Producer, Jiarui Guo

Jenny Poole
3 min readNov 21, 2023

Jiarui Guo came into the role of a film producer with an instinctual understanding of storytelling and structure. From her starting point as an intern through now, she has had her hand in over thirty projects, including The Venice Murders, Christmas on the Rocks, and From Paris with Danger.

Originally from China, Guo seeks to shine the spotlight on Chinese cinema. Her recent film, The Last Assassin, explores the world of Chinese martial arts and is set to premiere in downtown LA. Guo served as a creative producer on the film, and it will be followed by a sequel, which is currently in pre-production.

I had the opportunity to chat with Guo to discuss her path to producing, as well her inspirations and favorite films.

Tell me about what inspired you to become a producer?

In my college years, I was taught the importance of storytelling as a composer. I delved into learning story structures and screenwriting to enhance my skills. As a post-production intern, I witnessed the struggles of young filmmakers in post-production. I realized a competent producer must have the knowledge and ability to guide a project from the beginning to the end. I was initially attracted to the business side of filmmaking, but I fell in love with creative producing when I realized not only is it a pleasure to make films with like-minded people, but also a privilege to find the good stories that could make a difference–whether for other people or, selfishly, myself.

Jiarui Guo

What is the secret to success on a film project as a producer?

I believe it comes down to responsibility. The journey of making a film, whether it’s a short film or a feature, is often a lengthy one. As a filmmaker, it’s easy to start with great enthusiasm and find yourself feeling drained by the end. Throughout the filmmaking process, there are bound to be unexpected setbacks and conflicts that can dampen your initial passion. In such challenging situations, a profound sense of responsibility becomes crucial. It’s this responsibility that propels you forward, ensuring you persevere and meet the expectations of your investors and the rest of your team.

What are two of your recent favorite films that you have produced?

Vera and The Cuba’s Plan.

What is one favorite film that you have watched recently?

Talk to Me.

I hear you will be at AFM….what will be your goal there?

I have four movies coming next year so I’m looking to connect with distributors or sales agents.

You have a film coming out soon called The Last Assassin. Please tell us about a favorite scene or part of the project.

My favorite aspect is that this film is the beginning of a sequel. While we’re premiering in DTLA this Saturday, we’re also in the pre-production stage for the second installment. It’s always thrilling to witness the global recognition of Chinese martial arts cinema.

What is the best advice you have for rising producers?

Nothing is impossible, don’t set up any definition, just try it first.

You can learn more about Jiarui Guo’s work here.

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Jenny Poole

Film, TV & Music Journalist, Writer & Teacher. Over 10 years covering the entertainment industries, working with major US and Global outlets.