Watch: 'The Farewell' Director Lulu Wang Shot A New Short Film On An iPhone And You Can Watch It Now

Lulu Wang reunited with her team from the Golden Globe-nominated The Farewell to shoot a film on Apple's fancy new iPhone in honor of Lunar New Year. In the short, Nian, Wang puts a new twist on an old Chinese folktale in an 11-minute short that manages to capture a feeling of Studio Ghibli-style magic. Watch the entire short film below.

Watch Nian, Lulu Wang's Lunar New Year Short

If Spike Jonze's Where the Wild Things Are met up with Hayao Miyazaki's My Neighbor Totoro, it would look something like Wang's new Apple short Nian, an 11-minute short film celebrating the Lunar New Year (which falls on February 12 this year) that was entirely entirely on the iPhone 12 Pro Max.

Apple has been heavily touting the iPhone 12 Pro models as the best smartphone it's ever made for filmmakers, recently tapping Oscar-winning cinematographer Emmanuel Lubezki to shoot a 60-second film shot in HDR video with Dolby Vision on the model. But while Wang's short film is undeniably visually impressive, it's the magical story that she tells within those 11 minutes that makes Nian feel like more than a long Apple ad.

Nian tells the story of a curious young girl who is determined to find the "Nian," a monster from her mom's bedtime stories that is said to eat children who stray into the forest. But when she finds him, she discovers that Nian is not the fearsome beast she had thought him to be. The wondrous scenes shot in the forest – which a mirror crew on the ground in China had to capture – while Wang and her crew worked remotely in the U.S. due to COVID-19 travel restrictions – are absolutely stunning, as are the innovative shots and angles that Wang uses to expand that sense of wonder. A shot from within the monster's mouth is especially impressive, as is a dizzying montage as the young girl grows up alongside the Nian. The production also featured "hard-to-shoot night scenes and scenes set inside a cave, where space and lighting were limited," according to Variety, which is where the iPhone 12 Pro Max's Dolby Vision, low-light, ultra-wide lens, telephoto lens, stabilization and time-lapse features came in handy.

"It's really exciting that we have this opportunity to retell this ancient story, to capture these incredibly cinematic images with the iPhone, this very versatile device," Wang said in a behind-the-scenes feature accompanying the film. The Nian team had "a lot of fun just trying to figure out where else can we stick the phone so we can get angles and perspectives that are just a little bit more unique," Wang said.

Watch the behind-the-scenes clip of the making of Wang's Nian: