Related News

Home » Feature » Events and TV

Fair film fair - 8 days of more than 300 movies

MORE than 300 top-notch foreign and domestic films will be screened around the city over the eight-day Shanghai International Film Festival opening on Saturday. Xu Wei buys a ticket.

This is the week movie fans have been awaiting. More than 300 top-notch foreign and domestic films - in original versions with both Chinese and English subtitles - will be screened citywide during the Shanghai International Film Festival opening on Saturday.

International and Chinese stars and film makers will tread the red carpet, Golden Goblet Awards will be handed out, film salons will feature important films and industry folks will discuss how the movies can make money in the economic downturn.

Compared with previous film festivals, this 12th annual event will focus on how the movie industry can rise to the challenges posed by the financial crisis, see new opportunities and position itself for the future.

The eight days of festivities begin on Saturday evening when more than 300 movie stars and celebrities attend the grand opening at the Shanghai Grand Theater.

Celebrities include Hollywood actress Halle Berry, English actor Hugh Grant, French star Isabelle Huppert, veteran American actor Willem Dafoe, Hong Kong heartthrob Aaron Kwok, Chinese mainland film maker He Ping and actress Zhou Xun.

From 6:30pm, the local Art Channel and East Movie Channel will broadcast the proceedings live.

More than 40 domestic film producers will promote their latest projects, such as Wilson Yip's kung fu flick "Ip Man 2," Jingle Ma's historical epic "Mulan" and Ning Hao's highly anticipated comedy "No-Human Zone."

The Golden Goblet Awards are given out by the city of Shanghai to honor excellence in film worldwide. The awards ceremony will be held on June 21.

According to Tang Lijun, an official with the Shanghai International Film Festival, this year's festival will feature a record number of stars and movies.

"Some of our theme programs are incorporated with such big events as the 60th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China, and the coming Shanghai World Expo," Tang says.

This year 16 films, selected from a record 1,270 entries, have been nominated. They include German director Christoph Rohl's "A Piece of Me" and Italian film maker Dodo Fiori's "Schemes of Affection." The two Chinese entries with distinctive cinematography are "Empire of Silver" by Yao Shuhua and "Soul Searching" by Tibetan director Wanma Caidan.

Oscar-winning director Danny Boyle is president of the seven-member jury panel, which includes veteran Chinese mainland film maker Huang Jianxin, American actress Andie MacDowell, Hong Kong director Andrew Lau, Swiss director Xavier Koller, Japanese actress Komaki Kurihara and South Korean producer Oh Jung-wan.

The festival will screen around 300 films at 25 theaters around the city, including the Shanghai Film Art Center, Yonghua Cinema and Studio City cinema.

They include the recent Oscar-winning animation "Wall-E," romance "Rachel Getting Married," mystery thriller "Angels & Demons" and retrospectives of films by suspense master Alfred Hitchcock, French director Agnes Varda and South Korean film maker Im Kwon-taek.

Also to be screened are representative works of director Boyle, including "Trainspotting" and "Slumdog Millionaire," films of the late actor Xie Jin, and Italian films, Australian films, German films and Chinese new cinema.

Tickets range in price from 30 yuan (US$4.40) to 60 yuan. Sales are still under way. The screening schedule is available at

The festival also supports young Asian film directors through the Asian New Talent Award. Nine nominated films include Indian director Neeraj Pandey's "A Wednesday," Japanese film maker Hajime Kadoi's "Vacation," and two domestic works - "Walk to School" by Peng Jiahuang and Peng Chen and "Jalainur" by Zhao Ye.

Prizes of 150,000 yuan will be awarded for both Best Director and Best Feature Film.

This year's Golden Goblet film forum will cover topics from scriptwriting and funding to post-production. Industry insiders, critics and others will participate. Speakers include Oscar-winning Boyle and Stephen Daldry, director of "The Reader."

The focus of the forums will be how Chinese cinema and film industry should respond in the economic downturn. It will offer investment opportunities in Chinese films to foreign film makers.

The global economic downturn has not had an immediate obvious impact on the Chinese film industry, but a later negative impact is feared.

"The festival's forum is a good place to spot trends in Chinese cinema," says Wu Hehu, deputy director of Shanghai United Cinema Lines, the city's largest cinema chain. "It can provide very useful information for new film projects."

The festival also offers interactive programs for new media. The popular video Website will cover the festival live and offer online workshops and film salons, says Website president Zhang He.

"The festival's exhibition of short films by young directors is a highlight," Zhang says. "Grassroots film makers and works such as Wan Peng's award-winning film 'My Thanksgiving Day' will be attached more attention."

The film festival has become a fixture in the city's cultural life.

Movie fan Jeff Chen, a marketer, plans to watch "Psycho" (1960) and other classics with his friends.

"The economic downturn cannot dampen our passion for film," he says.

For details, check

To book tickets, call 962-388 or go to


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend