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June 21, 2011

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Everybody kicks back at after-party

AFTER two weeks of bleak rain, Shanghai dazzled as the curtain fell on the Shanghai International Film Festival. After a blessedly streamlined and elegant closing ceremony, winners, "losers," jury members and various celebrities adjourned on Sunday to the glittering after-party at the M1NT club.

Under clear skies, international stars walked the special red carpet outside the club and posed for photos. They were just as glamorous as they were at the festival, but the prizes had been awarded, the pressure was off and nobody had a case of nerves.

Italian actress Maria Grazia Cucinotta, wearing a glittering gown, was impressed with design, music and atmosphere of M1NT, calling it the best in the city. "I will definitely come back (to the club) for another great time if I have chance to visit the city again," she said.

Along with upbeat and classy lounge music, stars and staff finally relaxed after two weeks of tight scheduling and taut nerves over who would win. Congratulating each other, they also expressed appreciation to colleagues and the festival organizer.

Yuthlert Sippapak, Thai director of "Friday Killer," a gangster epic that won both Jury Award and Best Cinematography, was busy taking hugs, congratulations and cheers all night.

Thai movies drew considerable attention at the festival, with a Thailand Movie Week and dozens of popular Thai stars in the city. They were all pleasantly amazed by the unexpected popularity of their films and celebrities and said they hope to return soon to Shanghai.

"Friday Killer" made its world premiere at the festival and won two major awards.

"The jury was most entertained by a colorful, atmospheric, good-looking gangster epic paying open tribute to Quentin Tarantino," according to a statement read out at the closing ceremony.

Sippapak and the film's leading actress Ploy Jindachot greatly enjoyed the club and were out there swinging to the music.

The club summoned their best resident DJs Spenny and Greg Leigh with beats that got the juices flowing.

DJ Greg Leigh gradually warmed up the crowd before DJ Spenny, one of the most sought-after DJs in Asia, pushed it over the top around midnight.


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