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June 9, 2013

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Home » Metro » Entertainment and Culture

Film festival ticket sales up 20% on last year

TICKET sales for the 16th Shanghai International Film Festival got off to a flying start yesterday.

The organizing committee said that more than 4 million yuan (US$645,000) worth of tickets were sold by late afternoon on the first day - up 20 percent on the same period last year.

Popular choices with cinemagoers include arty movies with a strong storylines, classics and acclaimed documentaries.

The festival, which runs from June 15 to 23, will screen more than 300 foreign and domestic films at the 26 authorized cinemas of the city, including Shanghai Film Art Center, Yonghua Cinema and Stellar Cinema City.

All of the films will be shown in their original language, with both English and Chinese subtitles. Tickets are priced between 40 yuan (US$6.45) and 60 yuan.

Many movie fans went to the Shanghai Film Art Center yesterday to snap up tickets.

A cinema official said popular choices included a retrospective of movies by late Hong Kong actor and singer Leslie Cheung, Steven Spielberg's "Lincoln" and Japanese animation "Wolf Children."

David Shen, a 30-something company worker bought tickets for two Leslie Cheung classics - "Once A Thief" and "Farewell, My Concubine."

He said he was excited by the Cheung retrospective.

"This year marks the 10th anniversary of the talented actor's death," Shen said. "Cheung's films and songs have influenced our generation and this is a good occasion to commemorate him."

Gao Wenfu, a retired worker living in the neighborhood bought tickets for classic 1953 Japanese film "Tokyo Story," directed by Yasujiro Ozu. He said he has been waiting for a long time to see this masterpiece on the big screen.

"The film about the delicate relationship between an aging couple and their children still has resonance today," Gao said.

Yonghua Cinema said it had already sold 210,000 yuan worth of tickets. Qiang Jiamiao, the cinema's manager said the 350 tickets for the high-resolution 4K screening of "Shoah" had been sold out.

The nine-hour epic documentary film directed by Claude Lanzmann features testimonies from survivors of the Holocaust. It will be screened from 9am to 7pm.

"It is a good sign that audiences have shown more interest in creative and thoughtful films this year," Qiang said. "It proves that locals' tastes have improved."


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