THE weeklong Shanghai International Film Festival, which starts from tomorrow, will offer local movies lovers the chance to see a wide array of eclectic films from all over the world.
Up for competition for the festival’s coveted Golden Goblet and Asian New Talent awards are a record 2,096 entries from 108 countries and regions.
Among the Golden Goblet nominees are “Sunstroke,” a new offering from Russian director Nikita Mikhalkov; “Salut D’amour” by South Korean filmmaker Kang Je-kyu; and Taiwanese director Wang Tung’s “Where the Wind Settles.”
Acclaimed Russian director Andrey Zvyagintsev, known for his films “The Return” and “Leviathan,” will preside over this year’s Golden Goblet jury.
During the festival, more than 1,200 contemporary and classic films from all over the world will be screened at 45 local cinemas, including the Shanghai Film Art Center, Wanda International Cinemas, Peace Cinema and Studio City Cinema.
Acclaimed recent movies on the program include “The Theory of Everything,” “Whiplash,” “A Most Violent Year,” “Foxcatcher” and “Revivre.” The films cover a wide range of genres and many of them have received awards and accolades at other international film festivals.
In a nod to history, this year’s festival will celebrate the 120th anniversary of the creation of the cinematograph and the 110th anniversary of cinema’s arrival in China. Ground breaking classic movies such as “Gone With the Wind,” “The Sound of Music,” “Crossroads” and “Sunrise” will be screened.
For the first time the festival will also hold a Jackie Chan Action Movie Week. Other tributes will be made to celebrated figures such as French filmmaker and critic Jean-Luc Godard, Japanese actor Ken Takakura and Chinese-American actress Anna May Wong.
Digitally restored 4K-resolution versions of Hong Kong martial arts flick “Dragon Gate Inn,” Japanese new wave film “A Story of the Cruelties of Youth” and John Woo’s action thriller “A Better Tomorrow” will be screened.
On June 13, the festival’s opening ceremony will gather around 400 stars from home and abroad. Gong Li, Jackie Chan and Aaron Kwok have confirmed their attendance. Hong Kong filmmaker Derek Yee’s “I Am Somebody,” a heartwarming movie about the dreams of extras in China, will open the festival.
For film industry professionals and up-and-comers, the festival will include forums, film pitching meetings and master classes. There will also be a review-writing contest, outdoor film screenings and a film score concert.
The force touches down in Shanghai
DIE-HARD “Star Wars” fans will have a chance to see all six films in the series created by George Lucas during this year’s film festival.
Some polls have named it “the greatest sci-fi series in history” as the space epic follows the rise and fall of the Republic and the heroic efforts of the Jedi knights as they battle those who have given in to the dark side of the force.
The six movies are “Star Wars: The Phantom Menace,” “Star Wars: Attack of the Clones,” “Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith,” “Star Wars: A New Hope,” “Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back” and “Star Wars: Return of the Jedi.” It’s the first time the last three movies will be screened in domestic cinemas.
Brush up on favorite characters like Yoda, Han Solo, Darth Vader and R2D2 before “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” is released this December.